NEW YORK, Sept. 14, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Bernstein Liebhard, a nationally acclaimed investor rights law firm, reminds investors of the deadline to file a lead plaintiff motion in a securities class action that has been filed on behalf of investors that purchased or acquired the securities of FirstEnergy Corp. (“FirstEnergy” or the “Company”) (NYSE: FE) between February 21, 2017 and July 21, 2020 (the “Class Period”). The lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio alleges violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
If you purchased FirstEnergy securities, and/or would like to discuss your legal rights and options please visit FirstEnergy Shareholder Lawsuit or contact Matthew E. Guarnero toll free at (877) 779-1414 or MGuarnero@bernlieb.com.
The Complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period, Defendants issued materially false and misleading statements regarding FirstEnergy's internal controls, business practices and prospects. Specifically, Defendants touted FirstEnergy's legislative "solutions" to problems with its nuclear facilities, but failed to disclose that these "solutions" centered on an illicit campaign to corrupt high-profile state legislators in order to secure legislation favoring the Company. Over a nearly three-year period, FirstEnergy and its affiliates funneled more than $60 million to prominent state politicians and lobbyists, including Ohio Speaker Larry Householder, in order to secure the passage of Ohio House Bill 6 ("HB6"), which provided a $1.3 billion ratepayer-funded bailout to keep the Company's failing nuclear facilities in operation. In addition, Defendants falsely represented that they were complying with state and federal laws and regulations regarding regulatory matters throughout the Class Period, exposing the Company and its investors to the extreme undisclosed risks of reputational, legal and financial harm. As a result of Defendants' false statements and omissions, the price of FirstEnergy stock was artificially inflated to a high of more than $50 per share during the Class Period, and Company insiders were able to sell more than $17 million worth of their FirstEnergy shares at these artificially inflated prices.
Then, on July 21, 2020, federal agents announced the arrest of Householder and four other persons, including a prominent FirstEnergy lobbyist, in connection with a $60 million racketeering and bribery scheme. The 82-page criminal complaint and affidavit detailed an alleged pay-to-play scheme in which FirstEnergy corrupted every facet of the legislative process in order to ensure the passage of HB6, including defending the bill against a citizens ballot initiative. Prosecutors described the case as involving the "'largest bribery, money-laundering scheme'" in Ohio history.
On this news, the price of FirstEnergy stock plummeted, trading as low as $22.85 per share on July 22, 2020, down 45% from its closing price of $41.26 per share on July 20, 2020.
If you wish to serve as lead plaintiff, you must move the Court no later than September 28, 2020. A lead plaintiff is a representative party acting on behalf of other class members in directing the litigation. Your ability to share in any recovery doesn’t require that you serve as lead plaintiff. If you choose to take no action, you may remain an absent class member.
If you purchased FE securities, and/or would like to discuss your legal rights and options please visit https://www.bernlieb.com/cases/firstenergycorp-fe-shareholder-class-action-lawsuit-stock-fraud-286/apply or contact Matthew E. Guarnero toll free at (877) 779-1414 or MGuarnero@bernlieb.com.
Since 1993, Bernstein Liebhard LLP has recovered over $3.5 billion for its clients. In addition to representing individual investors, the Firm has been retained by some of the largest public and private pension funds in the country to monitor their assets and pursue litigation on their behalf. As a result of its success litigating hundreds of lawsuits and class actions, the Firm has been named to The National Law Journal’s “Plaintiffs’ Hot List” thirteen times and listed in The Legal 500 for ten consecutive years.
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