ANTIDEPRESSANTS: Tell All Book: “Side Effects: Death”: by Former Lilly Exec

Paragraphs two & three read:  “Many of the
horrific school, workplace and mass shootings that have plagued parts of the
world over the years
may not have occurred if the pharmaceutical
industry had been completely honest about the side effects of psychotropic
medication, according to the new book Side Effects: Death – Confessions of a
Pharma Insider
by former executive director of the Swedish Branch of Eli

Lilly & Company John Virapen.”

“Virapen claims that
anti-depressants and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
(SSRIs
) were known to have suicidal and homicidal side effects, even during
clinical trials.
Thanks to spin marketing and paid, positive articles in
scientific journals, he points out, the adverse reactions were often ignored or
given little thought by prescribing physicians and patients.”

http://www.prlog.org/10514103-what-big-pharma-knows-sideeffectsdeath.html

What Big Pharma Knows – “Side Effects: Death

Former pharmaceutical executive director reveals industry
secrets

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PR Log (Press
Release)
Feb 01, 2010 – P.O. Box 9949, College Station, TX.
77842 • Phone/Fax: 877-376-4955
http://www.virtualbookworm.cominfo@virtualbookworm.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Virtualbookworm.com Publishing Inc.

877-376-4955
reviews@virtualbookworm.com

What Big Pharma
Knows – “Side Effects: Death

Many of the horrific school, workplace and
mass shootings that have plagued parts of the world over the years may not have
occurred if the pharmaceutical industry had been completely honest about the
side effects of psychotropic medication, according to the new book Side Effects:

Death – Confessions of a Pharma Insider by former executive director of the
Swedish Branch of Eli Lilly & Company John Virapen.

Virapen claims
that anti-depressants and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) were
known to have suicidal and homicidal side effects, even during clinical trials.
Thanks to spin marketing and paid, positive articles in scientific journals, he
points out, the adverse reactions were often ignored or given little thought by

prescribing physicians and patients.

Virapen also asserts the
pharmaceutical industry has engaged in bribery and other major forms of
corruption to gain approval for and in the marketing of many drugs used to treat
such conditions as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD),
schizophrenia, arthritis, pain, diabetes and many others. The industry also
“makes up” illnesses to enhance sales and market shares, he says.

To
boost sales, Virapen writes, large pharmaceutical corporations spend about
$35,000–$40,000 per year and per practicing doctor to persuade them to prescribe
their products. In addition to covering or “massaging” the negative effects of
drugs, many of the companies engage in “off-label marketing,” which encourages
physicians to prescribe the medicines for conditions for which they haven’t been
approved, Virapen reveals.

Born in British Guyana, John Virapen went
from a door-to-door conman to a pop star, to a pharmaceutical representative to
executive director of one of the largest drug companies in the world. He admits
to participating in bribery, false information and deception to help launch and
market some of the most popularly prescribed (and most dangerous) drugs. In an
effort to exorcise his demons and expose the tactics and dangers of the
pharmaceutical industry, he wrote this expose.

The book has been
published in four languages around the world and is a best-seller in Europe.

Side Effects: Death – Confessions of a Pharma Insider is available in
softcover (ISBN 978-1-60264-516-5) and e-book (ISBN 978-1-60264-517-2) hardcover
from Virtualbookworm.com, Amazon.com, and Barnesandnoble.com. This book can also
be ordered from most bookstores around the United States and United Kingdom.
More information can be found at the book’s official website, www.sideeffectsdeath.com.



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WELLBUTRIN & LORAZAPAM: Bear Stearns’ Tannin Faces Charges

NOTE FROM Ann Blake-Tracy: For years I have said this was bound to
happen as a result of the widespread use of antidepressants. You CANNOT trigger
mania and hypomania is such a wide population without this kind of backlash – it
is impossible! Mania includes risk taking, wild spending, poor judgement, etc.,
etc. and we wonder why we find ourselves now in this financial dilemma?

For two decades this kind of behavior has been repeated over and over and
over again in family after individual family as they fall apart via
antidepressant-induced mania. It is a perfect formula for divorce coupled with
financial ruin. You cannot have this happen in so many individual families and
not have the same happen to the nation.

Utah led the way in antidepressant use and within 7 – 8 years it went
from the lowest divorce rate in the nation to over the national average and
became the bankruptcy capital of the nation.

What will it take for us to learn the lesson of the serious dangers of these
serotonergic medications? And when will we learn as a society to place the blame
for this entire nightmare where it belongs – squarely on the shoulders
of the pharmaceutical industry?!!!

_________________________________________

In words never intended for public consumption, Tannin wrote of his
worries about becoming dependant on an antidepressant, Wellbutrin, and a stress
medication, Lorazapan, to cope with concern about the performance of his
fund.
He expressed satisfaction at earning close to $2m (£1.3m) in a
year but alluded to a “religious crisis” and complained about “schlepping the
kids around from place to place” during a holiday in London.

As his confidence in his money-making panache began to falter, Tannin
pinpointed a meeting in 2006 when he realised that his Bear Stearns fund faced
potential trouble: “I had a wave of fear set over me – that the Fund couldn’t be
run in the way that I was ‘hoping’. And that it was going to subject investors
to ‘blow up risk’.”

Tannin and his boss, Ralph Cioffi, ran two funds
holding $1.4bn of clients’ funds that collapsed in July 2007, an event widely
viewed as the first clear signal of America’s sub-prime mortgage crisis and the
global credit crunch. The meltdown of these funds sparked a chain of events that contributed to the demise of Bear
Stearns
, an 85-year-old Wall Street institution, in early 2008. They
have been charged by US prosecutors with defrauding customers by hiding the true
condition of investments as prospects steadily darkened.

The first high-rolling financiers to face criminal
action arising from the financial crisis, Cioffi and Tannin have become
unwitting poster boys for perceived arrogance, recklessness and irresponsibility
on Wall Street.

Former Wall Street financiers face criminal action

Former Bear Stearns hedge fund manager
Matthew Tannin‘s private jottings show concerns about ‘blow up risk’ to
investors

Bear Stearns HQ

Former Bear Stearns hedge fund managers Matthew Tannin and
Ralph Cioffi ran two funds that collapsed in July 2007. Photograph:
Newscast

They are scribblings that may come back to haunt
Matthew Tannin. The former high-flying Bear
Stearns
hedge fund manager – who goes on trial for fraud in a New
York court this week – had a habit of recording his inner-most thoughts in
emails sent to himself on a private Google Mail account.

“I am going to use this to keep my diary,” he wrote. “I didn’t want to use my
work email any more.”

In words never intended for public consumption, Tannin wrote of his worries
about becoming dependant on an antidepressant, Wellbutrin, and a stress
medication, Lorazapan, to cope with concern about the performance of his fund.
He expressed satisfaction at earning close to $2m (£1.3m) in a year but alluded
to a “religious crisis” and complained about “schlepping the kids around from
place to place” during a holiday in London.

As his confidence in his money-making panache began to falter, Tannin
pinpointed a meeting in 2006 when he realised that his Bear Stearns fund faced
potential trouble: “I had a wave of fear set over me – that the Fund couldn’t be
run in the way that I was ‘hoping’. And that it was going to subject investors
to ‘blow up risk’.”

Tannin and his boss, Ralph Cioffi, ran two funds
holding $1.4bn of clients’ funds that collapsed in July 2007, an event widely
viewed as the first clear signal of America’s sub-prime mortgage crisis and the
global credit crunch. The meltdown of these funds sparked a chain of events that contributed to the demise of Bear

Stearns, an 85-year-old Wall Street institution, in early 2008. They
have been charged by US prosecutors with defrauding customers by hiding the true
condition of investments as prospects steadily darkened.

The first high-rolling financiers to face criminal
action arising from the financial crisis, Cioffi and Tannin have become
unwitting poster boys for perceived arrogance, recklessness and irresponsibility
on Wall Street. Frustrated at not seeing higher-ranking bank bosses clapped in
irons, the public and the US media are watching keenly.

“I do think there’s a desire on the part of the public to see people held
accountable,” said Barbara Roper, director of investment protection at the
Consumer Federation of America. “The trouble is that a lot of what brought down
the system was legal.”

According to the government, Tannin and Cioffi stuffed their funds with
dangerous mortgage-linked securities while marketing them as low-risk,
high-quality investments. Federal authorities obtained Tannin‘s deleted email
account by serving a subpoena on Google, forcing the company to search its
archives.

Prosecutors say the pair realised at an early stage that things were going
amiss, exchanging messages remarking that conditions had turned “pretty damn
ugly” and that the sub-prime market was “toast”. But they constantly reassured
customers that they were comfortable, that there were buying opportunities and
that there was no cause for alarm. Behind the scenes, the US government contends
that Cioffi’s private concern was such that he withdrew $2m of his own money,
reducing his own “skin in the game”.

The trial, which begins on Tuesday, is expected to last six weeks, with at
least 38 prosecution witnesses and 500 exhibits. Arrested in June last year,
Cioffi and Tannin have had 16 months to prepare their defence. Their lifestyles
have been widely scrutinised – New York magazine recently reported, in an
unsympathetic tone, that Cioffi had been obliged to sell his beachside retreat
in the Hamptons and two of his three Ferraris.

Legal experts say that it will be a tough case for the government to prove.
Few of the facts of what happened are in dispute. But prosecutors must convince
a jury of the defendants’ state of mind by producing evidence of intent to
defraud.

“The government will need every drop of evidence it has to prove intent,”
said Peter Henning, a white-collar law expert at Wayne State University in
Michigan. “These cases are circumstantial. It’s a string of inferences. It’s
about what they knew and when they knew it.”

They may be the first. But Cioffi and Tannin will by no means be the only
financiers to face criminal proceedings arising from the credit crunch. The FBI
has more than 580 corporate fraud investigations underway, of which at least 40
concern sub-prime mortgage lending.

“New York white-collar lawyers are doing quite well right now responding to
grand jury investigations and the threat of grand jury investigations,” said
Daniel Richman, a professor at Columbia Law School. “There’s a sense that quite
a few more are moving down the
pipe.”

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2/25/2001 – How drug firms reach the heart of government – stalking US corridor

Our thanks to the British newspaper, The Guardian, for exposing this
corruption in our government. The political ties of the drug companies is key
to understanding why we have drugs remaining on the market that the developer
came out against three years ago calling them “monsters” she has created.

Over the last several years I have watched, breathlessly asking “WHY?”, as
the mergers have continued with these companies making their power and
influence greater and greater in our world. Why this has not been stopped is
clear – our leaders have sold us out to the highest bidder through
“politically correct” bribes paid to those in office in the form of donations
to campaigns by these companies, not to mention the perks coming from their
lobbyists.

Ann Blake-Tracy, Executive Director,
International Coalition for Drug Awareness
www.drugawareness.org

“However, the real debate has arguably not been put before the American
public with any clarity, because the extent to which the pharmaceutical
industry in the US has been able to set the policy-making agenda remains
invisible to the average voter.”

“There was a time not long ago when the corporate giants that PhRMA
represents were merely the size of nations. Now, after a frenzied two-year
period of pharmaceutical mega-mergers, they are behemoths which outweigh
entire continents.

The combined worth of the world’s top five drug companies is twice
the combined GDP of all sub-Saharan Africa and their influence on the rules
of world trade is many times stronger because they can bring their wealth to
bear directly on the levers of western power. ”

http://www.guardianunlimited.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,437212,00.html

or see article at: http://www.mercola.com/2001/feb/24/drug_industry.htm

Industry that stalks the US corridors of power

In the second part of a series – how drug firms reach the heart of government

Special report: George Bush’s America

Julian Borger in Washington
Tuesday February 13, 2001
The Guardian

Washington teems with a thousand industrial lobbyists. They cluster around
the band of luxury offices and expensive restaurants which stretches from the
White House to the Capitol building – a two-mile axis along which money and
power are constantly traded.

In this pantheon of corporate muscle, no industry wields as much power as the
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association (PhRMA), a pressure
group breathtaking for its deep pockets and aggression, even by the standards
of US politics.

There was a time not long ago when the corporate giants that PhRMA represents
were merely the size of nations. Now, after a frenzied two-year period of
pharmaceutical mega-mergers, they are behemoths which outweigh entire
continents.

The combined worth of the world’s top five drug companies is twice the
combined GDP of all sub-Saharan Africa and their influence on the rules of
world trade is many times stronger because they can bring their wealth to
bear directly on the levers of western power.

In the struggle between western patent rights and the rest of the world’s
need for affordable medicine, the few concessions handed to the developing
nations in the last year of the Clinton administration are likely to be
reversed under Bush. The US government is expected to return to its customary
role as a battering ram for the interests of the pharmaceutical industry and
the principle of intellectual property.

Until recently, the industry hedged its political bets, backing the Democrats
and Republicans more or less evenly at election time. But at the last
election, it gambled. With billions at stake in a heated debate over
prescription drug prices at home and a growing number of patent disputes
abroad, the drugmakers stacked their chips disproportionately behind George
Bush. The industry spent nearly 70% of its unprecedented $24.4m campaign war
chest on the Republicans.

The wager paid off – just – and PhRMA has emerged at the apotheosis of its
political clout, with grateful Republicans running the White House, Senate
and House of Representatives. Politicians it has supported are now in key
positions and it deploys 297 lobbyists – one for every two members of
Congress.

‘Super profits’

The pharmaceutical industry is therefore well-placed to defend profits which
have soared in recent years to 36% (measured as a return on equity). That
rate of return on investment is more than twice the US average. It is far and
away the most profitable major industry in the country.

These “super-profits” have been generated by the proliferation of new
pharmaceutical discoveries and the parallel spread of worldwide patents. They
are also a measure of PhRMA’s success in using its influence in government to
fight off the threat of domestic price caps and competition from generic
manufacturers producing cheap copies of its drugs.

The industry played a significant role in the drafting of Trips (trade
related intellectual property rights) – that section of the World Trade
Organisation’s trade rules which relate to respect for patents. PhRMA has
also made it a priority to ensure that the US government has enforced the
Trips rules in a manner beneficial to its neighbours.

In 1998, for example, it was revealed that Al Gore had bullied the South
African government with threats of sanctions if it bought cheaper generic
alternatives to brand-name Aids drugs, even though South Africa had the right
to do so under Trips.

The outcry over the vice-president’s role, particularly among black
Americans, led to one of the few setbacks the lobby has faced. In December
1999, Bill Clinton announced that the US trade representative (USTR), the
country’s chief negotiator and enforcer in trade disputes, would consult with
the health department on the impact of intellectual property laws on access
to essential medicines in the developing world.

This may have been little more than lip service. The USTR continued to put
pressure on Latin American countries to agree to patent laws. Its criticisms
of Argentina and Brazil, on its “watch list” of patent miscreants, closely
echo briefing documents supplied by PhRMA.

The industry defends its hard-nosed approach by pointing to the cost of
research and development (R&D) and by the high risks involved in such a
pioneering field. Jeff Trewitt, PhRMA’s spokesman, said: “Patents are the
lifeblood to innovation. It costs about $500m to develop each pill and the
arbitrary abrogation of patents is going to kill that off.”

While the past decade has undeniably been a period of extraordinary and
vigorous innovation, the link between the development of new drugs and the
industry’s breathtaking profit margins is not necessarily as straightforward
as PhRMA maintains.

Creative accounting

Drug prices in Europe are about 60% of US prices, yet European firms spend a
larger share of their revenues on R&D than their American counterparts. The
US companies spent more on marketing than on R&D in 1999 (the last full year
figures are available) and set aside more for profits.

Moreover, with a little creative accounting, all manner of expenditures have
been lodged under the R&D title, partly in the pursuit of tax rebates.

In fact, much of the R&D work on new drugs is government-funded. A study by
the Boston Globe newspaper in 1998 found the National Institutes of Health
(NIH) laboratories spent $1bn on drug and vaccine development in the 1996 tax
year, but only took in $27m in royalties.

In September 1999, it was pointed out to the director of the NIH, Harold
Varmus, that six HIV/Aids drugs, as well as anti-malarial treatments and
other medicines of vital interest to developing countries, had been invented
with public funds. The government therefore had the right under US law to use
the drugs in public health initiatives.

Dr Varmus dismissed the suggestion, echoing the industry line that:
“Undermining licensed intellectual property rights would, I believe,
unnecessarily jeopardise the development of important therapeutic drugs.”

James Love, who runs a Washington-based group called the Consumer Project on
Technology, sees the response as nonsensical because it was the NIH which did
the hard work of discovering and synthesising the drugs in question. “The
rest of the world will have to go however many years more of paying an
astronomical sum for something invented by the United States government,” he
said. “How can we expect Glaxo to share its intellectual property if the
United States government won’t share its intellectual property to save
millions of people. What does that say about the moral character of the
American public. We are responsible.”

However, the real debate has arguably not been put before the American public
with any clarity, because the extent to which the pharmaceutical industry in
the US has been able to set the policy-making agenda remains invisible to the
average voter. Ten years ago, its modest campaign contributions of $2.9m were
evenly shared between the two parties and all in the form of “hard money” –
federally regulated donations for use in a specific election campaign.

In the 2000 election cycle, 60% of the drugmakers’ $24.4m contributions were
in the form of “soft money” – legal unregulated cash paid to the parties’
national committees for supposedly general use.

One of the biggest players in the soft money game is a group with the
public-spirited title of Citizens for Better Medicare. For an organisation
which commissioned an estimated $35m in advertising in the last election,
Citizens for Better Medicare, maintains a remarkably small office in downtown
Washington.

“We are a broad-based coalition of patients, doctors and the industry, which
stands for a system based on competition, consumer empowerment and senior’s
choice,” Tim Ryan, its executive director said. In terms of funding, however,
he concedes the base is considerably narrower.

“We may have some contributions from individuals, but yes, we are largely
funded by the industry. We haven’t talked about figures, so I can’t tell you
the percentage,” he said.

The percentage is close to 100. Citizens for Better Medicare (CBM) was
founded and is funded by PhRMA and the drug industry. When it registered
itself for non-profit status, CBM declared itself as a PhRMA affiliate.
Before taking up his executive director position, Mr Ryan was PhRMA’s
marketing director.

CBM does not need a big staff or extensive premises because 98% of the money
coming in from the industry is funnelled straight out to a single advertising
producer, Alex Castellanos. Mr Castellanos’s other main clients last year
were the George Bush election campaign and the Republican National Committee.
He was responsible for the most notorious advertisement of the 2000 election,
in which the word Rats flashed subliminally on the screen during a discussion
of Al Gore’s healthcare proposals.

Key positions

There are other examples of how the distinction between the interests of the
pharmaceutical industry and the Bush presidency have blurred. There is a
fast-spinning revolving door between government and the pharmaceutical
industry. Mitch Daniels, the new director of the office of management and
budget in the White House, was formerly the vice-president for strategy and
policy at the pharmaceutical giant, Eli Lilly. Two members of the Bush
transition team, Anne Marie Lynch and Bill Walters, are PhRMA members. Three
others were seconded from big pharmaceutical firms.

“The PhRMA doesn’t need to lobby,” Democratic congressman Sherrod Brown said
in a memo to staff last month. “The industry is in the White House already.”

The industry has sympathetic politicians in key positions in Congress. Behind
George Bush, the biggest recipient of pharmaceutical funding in the last
election was Orrin Hatch, a conservative Republican from Utah, who chairs the
Senate judiciary committee and is therefore well-placed to influence patent
disputes.

The industry backed Senator Hatch to the tune of $340,000 and provided a
plane for him to travel about the country in his quixotic bid for the
Republican presidential nomination last year.

Tomorrow: Are western drug companies using the third world poor as guinea
pigs for their drug trials?

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4/14/2000 – FDA Doc Claims Fen-Phen Cover-Up

More “hanky-panky” in the pharmaceutical industry. Did you see
this article posted this week on the CBS news site? There is a
link on our site to the class-action lawsuit suit if you or someone
you know has been effected by fen-phen. Mark

http://cbsnews.cbs.com/now/story/0,1597,181616-412,00.shtml

FDA Doc Claims Fen-Phen Cover-Up

* Says Drug Maker Altered His Findings
* Diet Drug Linked To Heart, Lung Maladies
* Company Agreed To $4.8 Billion Settlement Last Year

WASHINGTON
CBS
Fen-phen

(CBS) The drug company that manufactured “fen-phen,” a diet
medication linked to heart ailments, covered up problems with
the drug that emerged during Food and Drug Administration
testing, a former FDA scientist tells CBS News.

Fen-phen was removed from the market in 1997. Thousands of
people who took the drug have sued American Home Products
of Madison, N.J., for health problems they claim the drug caused.

In an Eye on America investigation, CBS News Correspondent
Sharyl Attkisson reports the FDA’s key reviewer of fen-phen, Dr.
Leo Lutwak, claims the company knew about the problems long
before the drug was pulled.

“I felt from the very beginning the drug companies were covering
up. I felt from the very beginning that these drugs were
dangerous,” said Lutwak.

He claims American Home Products twisted the meaning of his
research to make it seem as if there was no way to predict
fen-phen’s hazards.

“What I had actually written was, that in view of the covering up of
information by the drug company, the FDA had no way of
predicting some of these side effects,” he said.

One of those who sued American Home Products was Patricia
Buol, who developed severe heart problems after taking
fen-phen. She’s now in line for a life saving heart-lung transplant.

The company settled with Buol this week.

“Being part of my kids’ lives and doing their everyday activities is
a struggle,” said Buol. “But I just take one day at a time and do
the best I can.”

Dr. Lutwak’s testimony is crucial to fen-phen cases like Buol’s.
But the FDA won’t let him testify. Now Lutwak says he’s planning
to retire, making him free to testify at will.

“I followed the rules and regulations, I didn’t go public. I tried to
work within the system, it didn’t work. People died as a result of a
dangerous deadly drug being released,” he said.

Defendant American Home Products would not be interviewed,
but has said in the past it “acted responsibly and lawfully.”

FDA Commissioner Jane Henney refused a CBS News request
to answer the allegations.

The agency’s last commissioner, Dr. David Kessler, criticized the
agency’s current approach to drug regulation.

“I have some concerns that we may be losing sight of what the
FDA is all about,” said Kessler. “The question is, who’s the
agency’s customers? Who’s the agency partner?”

Consumer advocates say the FDA is constantly keeping
damaging information from the public.

“They view the drug industry in many ways as their customers, at
least the bosses do, as opposed to viewing the public as the
customers they need to protect from some of the excesses of the
drug industry,” said Sidney Wolfe of Public Citizen.

Concerns about the FDA also emerged during the controversy
over the diabetes drug Rezulin.

Kessler said the agency needs to realize the American
consumer is its customer.

American Home Products also makes such drugs as
Caordarone, Sectral, Protonix, Synvisc and Pnu-Imune.

Fen-phen is actually a combination of two drugs, fenfluramine
and phentermine, which work by suppressing the appetite of a
person who is trying to lose weight.

It was estimated that in 1996, 18 million Americans took the
drugs.

FDA: Under The Micriscope
Click here to read CBS News Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson’s
reports on the FDA and the diabetes drug RezulinBut a report in
the August 1997 New England Journal of Medicine found that
fenfluramine can in some cases lead to pulmonary
hypertension, a rare, almost always fatal, disease. It was also
linked to heart valve malfunction.

In September, 1997, the FDA, saying it was “acting on new
evidence about significant side-effects,” asked the
manufacturers to voluntarily withdraw both medications,
marketed under the names Pondimin (fen-phen), and Redux, a
similar medication.

Wyeth-Ayerst Laboratories, a subsidiary of American Home
Products, complied.

However, the company continued to deny the drugs caused the
alleged problems. In November, 1998, Wyeth-Ayerst published a
study that compared heart function in people who had taken
fen-phen and a group who hadn’t, and concluded there was “no
significant differences in cardiovascular clinical outcomes.”

But that didn’t stop the fen-phen fallout.

A February, 1999 60 Minutes II investigation with U.S. News &
World Report revealed that Wyeth-Ayerst knew more than it told
about the pulmonary hypertension risks, a charge the company
denied.

In September 1999, the Wall Street Journal reported that the FBI
was investigating the FDA’s approval of Redux.

A month later, American Home Products agreed to pay up to
$4.83 billion to settle the more than 11,000 fen-phen lawsuits,
one of the biggest product liability settlements ever.

As part of the settlement agreement, the company admitted no
wrongdoing.

Copyright 2000, CBS Worldwide Inc., All Rights Reserved.

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