INVESTOR FILES CLASS ACTION SUIT AGAINST KROGER

CINCINNATI -- Kroger Co. here and Joseph A. Pichler, Kroger chairman and chief executive officer, face a class action lawsuit filed in late May in U.S. District Court here by a shareholder who alleges the company knew about improper accounting practices at its Compton, Calif.-based Ralphs subsidiary last September, six months before going public with the news.On March 5, Kroger said it had been made

CINCINNATI -- Kroger Co. here and Joseph A. Pichler, Kroger chairman and chief executive officer, face a class action lawsuit filed in late May in U.S. District Court here by a shareholder who alleges the company knew about improper accounting practices at its Compton, Calif.-based Ralphs subsidiary last September, six months before going public with the news.

On March 5, Kroger said it had been made aware "of the possibility" of misdeeds at Ralphs in September. It said it then conducted an internal audit and hired an outside law firm to investigate the situation.

Kroger could not be reached for comment.

Schiffrin & Barroway, the Bala Cynwyd, Pa.-based law firm representing the Kroger shareholder who filed the suit, declined to comment on the matter.