Fen-Phen Plaintiffs May Settle for Horse

Preakness winner Curlin could soon have 400 new owners
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 3, 2007 7:09 AM CDT
Attorney Shirley Cunningham Jr., enters the Federal Courthouse in Covington, Ky., Thursday, June 21, 2007. Cunningham, a minority owner of Preakness winner Curlin, pleaded not guilty to charges that...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – A Kentucky judge ruled that 400 plaintiffs, defrauded in a 2001 settlement of the fen-phen case, can seize the horse owned partly by two jailed laywers. Curlin, who won this year's Preakness and Breeders' Cup Classic, already had five owners after attorneys William Gallion and Shirley Cunningham Jr. sold 80% of their share this year, reports the Courier-Journal.

Cunningham and Gallion owe the diet-drug plaintiffs they represented $64.4 million the judge said they claimed illegally in the $200-million case. The group's (new) attorney called Curlin "a valuable asset," though she isn't sure that the horse is worth the whole amount owed. The plaintiffs prefer to sell the horse, and current owners appear to favor a public auction.