BERKELEY, Calif., Nov. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP today announced that its investigation on behalf of investors of stock sales by Central European Distribution Corp. (NASDAQ: CEDC) executives while CEDC was experiencing undisclosed problems with its business has deepened in light of CEDC's report this week of an operating loss of $645.2 million. Hagens Berman partner Reed R. Kathrein is leading the firm's investigation. "It appears that CEDC's CEO, William V. Carey, sold $1.7 million in stock in December 2010," he said. "We are investigating what Carey knew and when he knew it in light of the significant problems the Company admits occurred in November and December 2010." Institutional investors and others who purchased CEDC stock between August 5, 2010, and February 28, 2011, and who have losses exceeding $50,000 are encouraged to contact the firm. Reed R. Kathrein can be reached at (510) 725-3000 or via email at CEDC@hbsslaw.com. Investors can also learn more about this investigation at www.hbsslaw.com/CEDC. The deadline to move the court for lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of investors is December 23, 2011. CEDC is a producer of spirits and is one of the largest producers of vodka, especially in Central and Eastern Europe. Operations in Poland and Russia form a large part of the company's business. The lawsuit, filed on October 24, 2011, alleges that the company misled investors by misrepresenting its business prospects, especially with regard to its business in Poland. The lawsuit claims that CEDC failed to timely disclose material information to investors, including declines in its vodka portfolio, especially in Poland, and negative financial results from the launch of Zubrowka Biala, a new vodka product. On March 1, 2011, the company issued a press release announcing financial results for 2010. The company reported net losses exceeding $90 million, shocking investors. The company's stock fell more than 37 percent, down more than $8.50 per share, according to the complaint. Persons with knowledge that may help the investigation are encouraged to contact the firm. The SEC recently finalized new rules as part of its implementation of the whistleblower provisions in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Bill. The new rules protect whistleblowers from employer retaliation and allow the SEC to reward those who provide information leading to a successful enforcement with up to 30 percent of the recovery.
Central European Distribution (Nasdaq:CEDC) hit a new 52-week low Thursday as it is currently trading at $2.73, below its previous 52-week low of $2.75 with 347,910 shares traded as of 11 a.m. ET. Average volume has been 915,600 shares over the past 30 days.