A Los Angeles judge dismissed 12 charges of an amended 46-count fraud indictment Friday against Charles H. Keating Jr., former chairman of Lincoln Savings & Loan's parent company, and three associates.
Superior Court Judge Lance Ito threw out the charges at the request of the defense on the grounds that they were improperly filed.
The four defendants are accused of defrauding 23,000 investors, most of them elderly, out of $250 million in the sale of worthless junk bonds.
The charges Ito dismissed are among 22 of the 46 charges against Keating and the three others that the judge had set aside in November as being too vague. The prosecution was asked at the time to resubmit them in an amended form.
Deputy Dist. Atty. William Hodgeman refiled the charges later that month and added four more.
At Friday's hearing, defense attorneys argued that the job of filing the amended counts belonged to the grand jury that had returned the original indictments, and not to the district attorney.
Ito let stand 10 of the amended charges, meaning that Keating and his co-defendants face a total of 34 counts.
On trial with Keating are Judy Wischer, formerly his top aide, and former Lincoln presidents Ray Fidel and Robin Symes.