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Judges In 2 Jurisdictions Asked To Help Dissolve Parent Company Of Philadelphia Inquirer

By Steve Tawa

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — In yet another twist to the ongoing dispute between feuding owners at the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News, judges in two jurisdictions – Philadelphia (Common Pleas) and Delaware (Chancery) – are being asked to help dissolve the parent company.

There’s only one point on which opposing sides agree – the partnership among the current five owners cannot continue and the company, Interstate General Media, should be dissolved and sold. But just how they get there is the issue.

The faction led by co-owners Lewis Katz and Gerry Lenfest wants Philadelphia Judge Patricia McInerney, (who recently granted their request to get fired editor Bill Marimow reinstated), to order a public auction.

But the group led by rival George Norcross wants Delaware Judge Donald Parsons to order a private auction, limited to the current owners.

They appeared before Judge McInerney Monday and will do likewise Tuesday before Vice Chancellor Parsons.

“It’s my hunch – my suspicion – that the two judges will confer with each other and they’ll be deferential to each other,” IGM attorney Marc Sonnenfeld said.

Observers on both sides say the judges are likely to decide between themselves who takes the case and hears arguments on what form an auction will take.

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