The Complaint, filed in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, alleges that Defendants manipulated, by means of deceptive acts, practices and contrivances, the market price of e-Net stock with the intent, purpose and effect of creating and maintaining artificially high market prices. The Complaint further alleges that Defendants accomplished the manipulation by engaging in unauthorized trading in the accounts of certain Dean Witter customers in order to stabilize the price of e-Net, creating and promoting a plan to withhold stock from short sellers to effect a 'short squeeze' and by making false statements to discourage clients from selling e-Net.
On January 23, 2003, the defendant Dean Witter Reynolds filed a motion to dismiss complaint for failure to state a cause of action. On March 17, 2003, the Court entered the Order denying the motion to dismiss, and on March 31, 2003, the Court entered the Amended Order denying the motion to dismiss. On May 22, 2003, a notice of interlocutory appeal was filed by Dean Witter Reynolds, Inc. in the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals. On July 5, 2005, the Court entered the Order from the U.S. Court of Appeals as to the notice of interlocutory appeal. According to the Order, the district court’s order denying Dean Witter’s motion to dismiss is vacated and remanded for reconsideration in accordance with the Eleventh Circuit’s analytical directions for the limited purpose of determining the date that the plaintiff class had sufficient factual information of their financial loses being the result of fraudulent conduct by Dean Witter to constitute inquiry notice to enable the class-action complaint to be filed in this case.
According to a press release dated July 30, 2007, an appeals court has marked the fifth anniversary of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act by dismissing a securities fraud case against brokers Dean Witter Reynolds Inc., ruling the class action could not be revived even by today's more generous statute of limitations. In its decision published Friday, the Eleventh Circuit overturned a Florida district court's ruling and ordered the class action remanded back for dismissal, saying plaintiffs in the case had ample time in which to sue the firm before the 2002 Act. The circuit judges ruled that the amended statute of limitations under provisions of Sarbanes-Oxley did not save the class action from being fatally time-barred; the plaintiffs, they said, had been on notice since a newspaper report warned investors of a possible fraud as early as September 1998.