Tenth Circuit Holds Corporate Shareholders Do Not Have Standing Under Rico To Sue Derivatively For Alleged Injuries To Corporation

In Bixler v. Foster, No. 09-2138, 2010 WL 597477 (10th Cir. Feb. 22, 2010), the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a class action lawsuit brought by minority shareholders of Mineral Energy and Technology Corporation (“METCO”) against its directors and lawyers. Plaintiffs alleged that defendants violated the civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”), 18 U.S.C. §§ 1961-1968, for authorizing and facilitating the transfer of METCO’s assets to an Australian corporation. The Tenth Circuit held that, among other things, (1) plaintiffs lacked standing under RICO to assert shareholder derivative claims and (2) allegations of securities fraud did not establish predicate acts under RICO. This decision confirms that the civil RICO statutes generally are not available to shareholders and investors seeking redress for alleged ordinary corporate misconduct.

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Published In: Civil Procedure Updates, Civil Remedies Updates, General Business Updates, Constitutional Law Updates, Mergers & Acquisitions Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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