Six current or former directors of Amerco, Inc., the parent company of U-Haul International, Inc. were found liable for $1.47 billion in a jury verdict. The lawsuit was brought by members of the Shoen family. The plaintiffs alleged the defendants, acting on behalf of other Shoen family members who control Amerco, wrongfully prevented the plaintiffs from gaining control of the company and caused the value of the plaintiff’s stock to sharply drop. Additionally, one of the defendant directors was ordered to pay $70 million in punitive damages.
A $1.1 billion settlement was reached in a lawsuit brought by General Motors against Volkswagen and is senior officer, Jose Ignacio Lopez de Arriortua. General Motors alleged that Volkswagen inappropriately acquired and made use of several million pages of GM secrets when VW hired Mr. Lopez away from General Motors.
Prudential Securities, Inc., its parent company and their top officers and directors settled for $110 million in a class action lawsuit brought by a limited partnership of 100,000 investors. The lawsuit alleged that Prudential engaged in a scheme to develop and form highly speculative limited partnerships in which shares or units could be fraudulently sold to the unsuspecting public as safe and secure investment vehicles with substantial returns.
A $65 million settlement was reached in a shareholders class action lawsuit brought against Louisiana-Pacific Corp. and four of its current and former officers. The shareholders alleged that the defendants violated the federal securities laws by not disclosing known problems and defects relating to the company’s home siding products. In a related class action lawsuit brought by homeowners who experienced problems with the company’s products, Louisiana-Pacific agreed to pay up to $375 million. The D&O insurer reportedly paid twenty million dollars of the shareholder settlement.