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SRI settlement cost it $1.9-million

By KRIS HUNDLEY, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published February 3, 2003

SRI/Surgical Express Inc. of Tampa boasted in a press release last week that it had settled all outstanding shareholder lawsuits stemming from a restatement of earnings in late 2001.

While the release said the total settlement would be covered by SRI's insurers, it left out one teensy little detail: the amount of the agreement.

Two days later, after newspapers had reported SRI's skimpy announcement, the company filed a more complete disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. SRI, which supplies hospitals with surgical supplies, will pay $1.9-million to settle the lawsuits while acknowledging no wrongdoing.

Still unknown: what chunk of that $1.9-million will go to shareholders' lawyers. But people who bought SRI's stock between March 30, 2001, and April 1, 2002, might look for a few pennies in the mail.

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