The legal battle between a major insurer and a high-profile plaintiff attorney over claims for properties damaged in Hurricane Katrina expanded on three new fronts last week–with a judge’s call to prosecute Richard “Dickie” Scruggs and associates for criminal contempt, a motion by State Farm to remove the law firm from the case and a racketeering suit filed by Scruggs against the carrier.

First came news that the Alabama U.S. Attorney’s Office is considering a judge’s order to bring a criminal contempt prosecution against Mr. Scruggs’ firm.

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