Cigarette Makers Discuss Settlement

New York, NY – The Wall Street Journal reports the nation's largest cigarette makers and prosecutors have met secretly at least once with a court-appointed mediator. They're reportedly trying to reach a settlement of the government's civil fraud and racketeering case against the companies.
The case is in it's sixth month of trial in Washington, but the newspaper says U. S. District Judge Gladys Kessler has privately encouraged both sides to reach a settlement
The talks follow a ruling last month by a federal appeals court that narrowed the remedies available to the government in the case