NU Online News Service, June 16, 3:22 p.m.EDT

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Maurice Greenberg took the witness stand in Manhattan federalcourt today to counter charges the company he now heads looted atrust fund allegedly set up to pay bonuses to AmericanInternational Group executives.

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Mr. Greenberg–who left as AIG's chairman and CEO in 2005 afteran accounting scandal involving the company's use of finitereinsurance to bolster its balance sheet–is chairman of StarrInternational Company (SICO), which AIG claims unlawfullymisappropriated $4.3 billion in stock that belongs to thetrust.

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AIG is seeking return of more than 185 million AIG shares thatSICO controls.

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Before Mr. Greenberg was called to the witness stand, hisattorney David Boies denied to the jury that there was ever anytrust in existence.

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Holding up copies of AIG financial reports, he said: "Tell me,Mr. AIG, where does this show you this trust? This does not talkabout creating a trust for AIG's benefit."

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Mr. Greenberg, who was called to the stand by AIG attorneyTheodore Wells, was asked whether SICO had not in fact been set upexclusively to deal with bonuses for AIG employees.

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Mr. Greenberg said, "It could be for other companies acquired bySICO," and that other firms could be involved in the bonuscompensation program.

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The trial is being held before U.S. District Court Judge JedRakoff, who has ruled that AIG's financial condition–havingreceived tens of billions in federal bailout money and governmentguarantees to keep the organization afloat after credit defaultswaps in its Financial Product unit nearly bankrupted the firm–willnot be a topic for the jury to hear about.

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Judge Rakoff has said he would permit speeches Mr. Greenbergmade to participants in the SICO plan into evidence, and part ofthe morning was taken up with introduction of the text of thosespeeches.

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