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Verizon (VZ) appointed a trustee to hold its 13% stake in MCIundefined, as the close of the $1.1 billion deal is expected next week.

The New York phone giant said Friday that it has been authorized by the Justice Department to have former attorney general Dick Thornburgh hold the 43.4 million MCI shares it is buying from Mexican investor Carlos Slim Helu.

Verizon's deal with MCI's largest shareholder effectively gives the telco a large block of votes as the proposed $8.4 billion merger with MCI goes before shareholders later this year. Verizon says Thornburgh will hold the shares and vote for the merger.

After a three-month bidding war, MCI's board wound up accepting Verizon's lower offer after rejecting higher offers from the financially weaker




Some of MCI's shareholders have been unhappy with the lower value of the Verizon proposal. In protest, several shareholders controlling about 20% of the stock said they would register their complaint by withholding their vote on MCI board member elections at the company's annual meeting next week, according to a story distributed by


on Thursday.