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Wichita Business Journal: Kansas joins in lawsuit against oil company


By David Dinell

Posted 3 June 04


The state of Kansas is hoping to recover millions of dollars for the Kansas Public Employee Retirement Systems (KPERS) in a lawsuit against Royal Dutch Petroleum Co., better known to consumers as Shell Oil Co.


The filing, which was undertaken by Attorney General Phill Kline, means the state joins 21 different entities in litigation against the multinational oil company.


The lawsuit alleges that between Dec. 3, 1999, and Jan. 9, 2004, the company violated standard accounting practices and Security and Exchange Commission regulations. The lawsuit also alleges that the company made "false and misleading statements" that led to the entities losing millions of dollars of value in their stock holdings in the company.


Lead party in the legal action is the commonwealth of Pennsylvania.


Officials at Royal Dutch were unavailable for comment.


The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court of New Jersey, says Jan Lunsford, a spokesman for Kline. Lunsford did not have an exact dollar amount that KPERS alleges it lost.


Royal Dutch is based in London and The Hague. Its U.S. operation, Shell Oil Co., is based in Houston. The company's stock trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol RD.


2004 American City Business Journals Inc.

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