The L.A. Times reported recently that local plaintiffs attorney Bill Lerach is expected to be indicted alongside his former law firm for doling out kickbacks to clients to bring lucrative shareholder lawsuits.

A federal judge in Los Angeles postponed a trial against securities law giant Milberg Weiss Bershad & Schulman and two of its partners in light of the likelihood that more charges were on the way, the paper reported Thursday.

At a status conference, federal prosecutors and defense lawyers repeatedly alluded to the prospect of additional indictments, which many observers believe could involve William S. Lerach. The San Diego lawyer, who helped pioneer shareholder class-action suits at Milberg Weiss, is one of the field’s most successful practitioners.

Lerach, who is known nationally for the securities fraud suits he files, made news most recently for leading a class-action suit against Hewlett-Packard, arguing that the spying scandal has damaged the high-tech company’s stock.

EVAN McLAUGHLIN

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