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Nike Seeks Dismissal of Suit Over Factories

June 30, 1998|Reuters

Nike Inc. moved to dismiss a California lawsuit charging that company executives lied about the conditions of Asian workers who make its popular athletic shoes. The Beaverton, Ore.-based footwear and apparel company said it filed a motion in San Francisco County Superior Court, requesting that the case be put on hold until its argument for dismissal can be heard. Nike said it hopes to have the case dismissed before it is required to begin producing documents requested by the lawyers and activists who filed the suit in April. The suit claims Nike used deceptive business practices by failing to tell California consumers the truth about working conditions in its Asian factories. It was filed by a group of high-profile plaintiffs' lawyers, who won a major suit against tobacco company R.J. Reynolds last year. A lawyer for Nike said the company will produce "any and all relevant documents once its 1st Amendment and document-request challenges are resolved." The company has come under fire for the low wages and poor working conditions in its factories. Chairman Phil Knight recently announced a new initiative to improve conditions. Nike shares rose $1.50 to close at $49.25 on the New York Stock Exchange.

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