HoustonChronicle.com -- http://www.HoustonChronicle.com
Dec. 20, 2005
(PZ) Wechsler Harwood Announces an Investigation of ERISA Violations
Relating to the Diebold, Incorporated 401(k) Savings Plan -- DBD
NEW YORK, Dec. 20, 2005 (PRIMEZONE) -- The New York law firm
of Wechsler Harwood LLP today announced that it has commenced an investigation
into Diebold, Inc. ("Diebold" or the "Company") (NYSE:DBD)
for violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974
("ERISA") in relation to its handling of investments in the Diebold,
Incorporated 401(k) Savings Plan (the "Plan").
In particular, the investigation focuses on whether the
Company and certain Plan administrators breached their fiduciary duties by,
among other things: (a) negligently misrepresenting and negligently failing to
disclose material facts to the Plan and the Plan participants in connection
with the management of the Plan's assets; (b) failing to properly monitor Plan
fiduciaries; and (c) negligently permitting the Plan to purchase and hold
Diebold stock when it was imprudent to do so.
Diebold is primarily engaged in the manufacture, sale,
installation and service of automated self-service transaction systems,
electronic and physical security products, election systems and software. The
material facts being investigated include, but are not limited to allegations
that the Company issued false statements about its business, products,
financial results and prospects which caused the Company's stock to trade at
artificially inflated levels. On September 21, 2005, before the market opened,
the Company announced it was "lowering its third quarter and full-year
earnings per share guidance for 2005." Upon release of this news, the
Company's stock plummeted to $37.27 per share on volume of 6.1 million shares.
Diebold's CEO and Chairman subsequently resigned.
According to a recent class action lawsuit filed in the
United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio against the
Company and certain of its senior officers and directors for violations of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934, defendants were aware of but concealed from
the investing public that: (a) Diebold's financial statements in 2004 and the
first two quarters of 2005 were misstated due to its improper accounting for
commission expenses; (b) the Company's internal controls were woefully
deficient; (c) Diebold was losing market share in North America to NCR such
that its ATM business would not be nearly as favorable in 2005 as the market
had been led to believe; (d) Diebold's election machines continued to have
severe problems that would hurt the Company in the future due to adverse
publicity and reduced sales; and (e) due to these problems, the Company was not
on track to report the favorable 2005 EPS being projected for the Company.
Wechsler Harwood has taken a leading role in many
significant actions on behalf of current and former employees who have suffered
losses in their employer-sponsored retirement accounts due to breaches of
fiduciary duties owed to them. The firm devotes a large part of its practice to
pursuing such claims as well as claims by defrauded investors and consumers.
Recently, the firm served as Co-Lead Counsel in an ERISA class action against
Royal Dutch/Sell plc which resulted in a recovery of over $90 million for the
class. If you wish to discuss this matter with an attorney or have any
information or questions concerning this notice or your legal rights as a Plan
participant, you may e-mail or call Wechsler Harwood. The Wechsler Harwood
website (www.whesq.com) has more information about the firm and detailed
information regarding this matter. For more information, please contact the
Wechsler Harwood LLP
Jeffrey M. Norton, Esq.
488 Madison Avenue, 8th Floor
New York, New York 10022
Toll Free Telephone: (877) 935-7400 (ext. 286)
e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
More information on this and other class actions can be
found on the Class Action Newsline at www.primezone.com/ca
Wechsler Harwood LLP
Jeffrey M. Norton, Esq.
(877) 935-7400 (ext. 286)
© 2005 PRIMEZONE
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