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Marsh agrees to turn over documents to Ohio as part of bid-rigging investigation


CLEVELAND—Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc. has agreed by the end of April to provide hundreds of boxes of requested documents under a civil court order filed by Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann as part of his bid-rigging investigation into the broker.

The stipulated order--which New York-based Marsh signed ahead of a hearing set for April 2--was filed by late last month by Mr. Dann, who is investigating Marsh for its alleged violation of state antitrust laws.

In a statement, Mr. Dann said Marsh's entry into the stipulation puts an "end to years of delaying tactics and legal maneuvering" by the broker to avoid complying with a document subpoena relating to charges that the company conspired with commercial casualty insurers to eliminate competition, mislead customers and inflate premiums paid by Ohio policyholders.

The order by Cuyahoga County Judge Ronald Suster requires Marsh to produce a total of 614 boxes of documents requested by Mr. Dann's office no later than April 30.

In addition, to the extent not already produced, Marsh must provide by that same deadline documentation of substantive business discussions, e-mail printouts and hard-copy files related to client placements from the period 2001 through 2004 by Marsh's Global Broking unit.

A hearing on the status of the stipulation order is set for May 24.

"We've cooperated with the Ohio Attorney General's office for two years; to date, we have already produced and delivered to the attorney general's office nearly one and a half million pages," a Marsh spokesman said.

"As we said from the outset, we have worked hard to resolve this dispute in a reasonable and sensible way, and we will continue to act in good faith until this matter is resolved," the spokesman said.

In 2005, Marsh paid $850 million in client restitution to settle a bid-rigging and steering suit filed by then-New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. A total of 33 states, along with the District of Columbia and Guam, participated in that settlement; Ohio did not.