Court dismisses Jabil backdating class action
Jabil Circuit, the St. Petersburg electronics manufacturer, said Tuesday that the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida in Tampa has dismissed with prejudice a consolidated securities class action lawsuit. The suit was previously filed against Jabil, KPMG LLP, and Jabil's directors and certain of its current and former officers. It was prompted by a March 18, 2006 Wall Street Journal article that specified certain companies, including Jabil, allegedly engaged in the backdating of stock option grants to favor its executives. Jabil said the court’s order precludes the plaintiffs from filing a fourth amended complaint. The plaintiffs can still appeal this dismissal within 30 days.
The court action follows a statement in November in which the Securities and Exchange Commission informed Jabil that it was ending an inquiry into the specific backdating allegations against Jabil. This week's court action helps further distance Jabil from the lingering cloud of backdating claims. In a press release, Jabil CEO Tim Main:
“The completion of two independent internal investigations; the prior settlement and dismissal of the derivative actions; the recent recommendation of no enforcement action by the SEC and this class action dismissal, seem to indicate that we have reached the end of this trying period for the company. We are pleased to have these issues behind us and have our full focus on growing our business and responding to, and navigating through, a challenging global economic environment.”
Jabil shares closed Tuesday at $6.12. (Tim Main photo by Atoyia Deans of the St. Petersburg Times.)
--Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist