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OBITUARIES

CHARLES R. RICHEY, 73, a noted U.S. district judge, died Wednesday in Washington, D.C., of cancer. The judge, appointed by President Richard Nixon, by happenstance presided over the earliest case involving the Watergate break-in. In 1981, he handed down what was then the largest damage award to victims of sex discrimination: $6-million in back pay and $10-million in future earnings for 324 women who worked at the Government Printing Office. He found that 28 of the women earned less money than their male counterparts and that 296 others were denied the opportunity for higher-paying jobs.

BERT-OLOF SVANHOLM, 62, chairman of the Swedish automaker AB Volvo, died Tuesday in Stockholm. Under Mr. Svanholm, who became chairman in 1994, Volvo divested itself of most of its non-automotive operations. Capital gains from those divestments allowed Volvo to record a pre-tax profit of $1.95-billion for 1996, despite a 9 percent drop in sales.

CHARLES H. DYSON, 87, an entrepreneur and philanthropist who made President Richard Nixon's "enemies list" in 1973 after joining the liberal group Common Cause, died last Friday in New York City. He was a lifelong Democrat who served in several posts in the Roosevelt administration.

RALPH SANTIAGO ABASCAL, 62, general counsel of California Rural Legal Assistance and one of the state's foremost lawyers for the poor, died Monday in Berkeley, Calif., of cancer. He helped draft the 1986 federal immigration reform law, then helped win court orders extending the federal amnesty deadline for 300,000 illegal immigrants. The Supreme Court overturned that ruling in 1993. The case is back in lower courts. A lawsuit he filed in 1969 on behalf of six farm workers led to a ban three years later on the pesticide DDT.

LUCY KROLL, 87, a talent agent whose clients ranged from James Earl Jones to Norman Mailer, died last Friday in Glendale, Mass. She crossed paths with a long list of American greats, including Lillian Gish, Martha Graham, Carl Sagan, Ossie Davis and Carl Sandburg. She represented playwright Horton Foote for half a century.

KARL HERRMANN, 81, a former Washington state insurance commissioner and consumer advocate, died Monday in Tacoma, Wash., of complications from diabetes. He gained national attention as commissioner by developing the personal injury protection program. It forced insurance companies to pay partial claims before a case is entirely settled.

_ Area obituaries and the Suncoast Deaths list appear in local sections.

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