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Dissenting law firm reappears with Indiana pension funds

by Bill Cawthon on

A group calling itself the Indiana Pensioners is challenging Chrysler’s reorganization plans and wants an examiner to look into the company’s business decisions.

The Indiana Pensioners consists of the Indiana State Police Pension Trust, the Indiana State Teachers Retirement Fund and the Major Movers Construction Fund. All three funds hold Chrysler senior secured debt. The group is represented by the law firm of White & Case, the same firm hired by the dissenting lenders in their unsuccessful bid to oppose the Chrysler plan.

At a hearing yesterday, Judge Arthur Gonzalez turned down the group’s request to have the District Court assess the federal government’s involvement in the Chrysler bankruptcy.The groups’ attorney promised further challenges both in Bankruptcy Court and the District Court.

In a court filing, the Indiana Pensioners claim: “The government has exceeded its authority, caused the debtors to breach their fiduciary duties, dominated and controlled all of the key decisions and assessments the debtors are required to make, and otherwise utilized this bankruptcy process to advance its own agenda at the expense of the debtors’ estates.

Bankruptcy law allows the appointment of an examiner if a party to the action requests one and the bankrupt company’s total debt exceeds $5 million. An examiner s tasked with investigating the causes of the company’s failure.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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