Israel Sanchez v. Centene Corp

Court: United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri
Case Number: 4:17-cv-00806-AGF
Judge: Hon. Audrey G. Fleissig
Class Period: 05/24/2016 - 07/25/2016
Case Contacts: Jonathan D. Uslaner, Lauren M. Cruz

This is a securities fraud class action on behalf of all purchasers of Centene Corporation common stock between May 24, 2016 and July 25, 2016, inclusive (the “Class Period”), alleging claims pursuant to Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 against Centene and two of its top officers, Michael Neidorff (its CEO and Board Chairman) and Jeffrey Schwaneke (its CFO).

The case commenced on November 14, 2016.  On May 1, 2017, the Court appointed Louisiana Sheriffs’ Pension & Relief Fund as Lead Plaintiff for the Class and BLB&G as Lead Counsel.  On July 17, 2017, Lead Plaintiff filed the operative Complaint on behalf of purchasers of Centene common stock between April 26, 2016 and July 25, 2016.

The Complaint alleges that Centene and certain of its top officers made false and misleading statements to investors, and omitted material facts, regarding the financial condition and liabilities of Health Net, Inc., which Centene acquired shortly before the Class Period.  When the truth emerged, the price of Centene’s common stock plunged precipitously, causing significant losses to investors.

On September 15, 2017, Defendants filed a motion to dismiss the Complaint, which Plaintiffs opposed. On August 30, 2019, the Court denied in part and granted in part the Defendants’ motion to dismiss, reducing the Class Period to the two-month period from May 24, 2020 through July 25, 2016. 

On January 29, 2020, following a mediation before Michelle Yoshida of Phillips ADR, the Parties reached an agreement in principle to settle the Action in return for a cash payment of $7,500,000, which is subject to the approval of the Court.

On March 5, 2020, the Parties entered into the Stipulation and Agreement of Settlement, which sets forth the full terms and conditions of the Settlement. On March 12, 2020, Lead Plaintiff filed a motion for preliminary approval of the Settlement with the Court. A complete notice about the Settlement and a Claim Form will be available after the Court grants preliminary approval to the Settlement.

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