December 15, 2015
Bernstein Liebhard LLP today announced that a securities class action has been filed in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware on behalf of a class (the “Class”) consisting of all persons or entities who sold the common stock of Dole Food Company, Inc. (“Dole” or the “Company”) (NYSE: DOLE) between January 2, 2013 and October 31, 2013, inclusive (the “Class Period”). The complaint charges Dole and certain of its officers and directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
The complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period, Defendants implemented a fraudulent scheme to acquire the publicly held shares of Dole in order to convert the Company into a privately-held enterprise owned by Dole Chairman and CEO, David H. Murdock (“Murdock”). Specifically, the complaint alleges that Defendants made false and/or misleading negative statements about Dole’s operations and finances, and omitted material information, in order to artificially lower the price of Dole’s stock so that Murdock could buy the Company at an artificially depressed price.
On June 12, 2013, Murdock made his initial proposal to take Dole private at $12.00 per share. On August 12, 2013, the Board announced that Dole and Murdock had entered into and signed a definitive merger agreement by which Murdock would acquire all of the outstanding shares of Dole common stock not currently held by him for $13.50 per share. The merger closed on November 1, 2013.
Plaintiffs seek to recover damages on behalf of all Class members who sold Dole securities during the Class Period. If you sold Dole securities as described above you may wish to join in this action to serve as lead plaintiff. In order to do so, you must meet certain requirements set forth in the applicable law and file appropriate papers no later than February 8, 2016.
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. Under certain circumstances, one or more class members may together serve as lead plaintiff. Your ability to share in any recovery is not, however, affected by the decision whether or not to serve as a lead plaintiff. You may retain Bernstein Liebhard LLP, or other counsel of your choice, to serve as your counsel in this action.
Bernstein Liebhard LLP has pursued hundreds of securities, consumer and shareholder rights cases and recovered over $3.5 billion for its clients. The National Law Journal has recognized Bernstein Liebhard for twelve consecutive years as one of the top plaintiffs’ firms in the country.
You can obtain a copy of the complaint from the clerk of the court for the United States District Court for the District of Delaware.