FirstEnergy investors may receive additional information about the case by clicking the link "Submit Your Information" above.
According to the complaint, FirstEnergy is an electric utility company with subsidiaries and affiliates involved in the distribution, transmission and generation of electricity, as well as energy management and other energy-related services. Its ten electric utility operating companies comprise one of the United States’ largest investor-owned utilities, serving more than six million customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, and New York. FirstEnergy also owned and operated two nuclear power plants in the State of Ohio, the Perry Nuclear Generating Station and the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station, through its subsidiaries FirstEnergy Solutions Corp. (“FES”) and FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company. Unknown to investors was that 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 (“Householder”), in order to secure the passage of Ohio House Bill 6 (“HB6”), which provided a $1.3 billion ratepayer-funded bailout to keep FirstEnergy’s failing nuclear facilities in operation.
The Class Period commences on February 21, 2017, when FirstEnergy filed with the SEC its annual report on a Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2016. The annual report stated that FirstEnergy would be exploring “[l]egislative or regulatory solutions for generation assets that recognize their environmental or energy security benefits.” The report stated with respect to FES that “management is exploring capital and other cost reductions, asset sales, and other options to improve cash flow as well as continuing with legislative efforts to explore a regulatory solution.” The report further stated that FES “complies with the regulations, orders, policies and practices prescribed by the SEC, FERC, NRC and applicable state regulatory authorities.”
The complaint alleges that the truth about FirstEnergy was revealed in dramatic fashion on July 21, 2020, when federal agents announced the arrest of Householder, and four others persons, including a prominent FirstEnergy lobbyist, in connection with a $60 million racketeering and bribery scheme. The 82-page criminal complaint and affidavit detailed a stunning pay-to-play scheme in which FirstEnergy brazenly corrupted every facet of the legislative process in order to ensure the passage of HB6. Prosecutors described the case as involving the “largest bribery, money-laundering scheme” in Ohio history. Following this news, the price of FirstEnergy stock dropped, 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.
The complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period, the 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 FirstEnergy. In addition, the defendants falsely represented that they were complying with state and federal laws and regulations regarding regulatory matters throughout the Class Period, exposing FirstEnergy and its investors to the extreme undisclosed risks of reputational, legal and financial harm.
If you are a member of the class described above, you may no later than September 28, 2020 move the Court to serve as lead plaintiff of the class, if you so choose.
A lead plaintiff is a representative party that acts on behalf of other class members in directing the litigation. In order to be appointed lead plaintiff, the Court must determine that the class member’s claim is typical of the claims of other class members, and that the class member will adequately represent the class. Your ability to share in any recovery is not, however, affected by the decision whether or not to serve as a lead plaintiff. Filling out the online form above or communicating with any counsel is not necessary to participate or share in any recovery achieved in this case. Any member of the purported class may move the court to serve as a lead plaintiff through counsel of his/her choice, or may choose to do nothing and remain an inactive class member.
Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP has not filed a complaint in this matter. If you wish to discuss this action or have any questions concerning this notice or your rights or interests with respect to these matters, please contact Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP toll free at 1-844-887-9500 or 1-610-667-7706, or via e-mail at email@example.com. If you would like additional information about the suit, please click on the link "Submit Your Information" above and fill out the form as promptly as possible.
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