U.S. Judge Kills Microsoft Private Suit Settlement

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A federal judge on Friday scuttled Microsoft's proposed multimillion-dollar settlement of the class-action antitrust suits filed against the software company.

U.S. District Court Judge J. Frederick Motz said he could not endorse the settlement, even though it would have committed Microsoft to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on software and computers for poor schools.

The ruling means Microsoft will have to start from scratch in negotiating a new settlement or fight the scores of suits in court.

The settlement would have resolved more than 100 class-action antitrust cases pending against Microsoft. Class-action attorneys from California have argued the money should be reimbursed directly to customers who were overcharged for Microsoft software.

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