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Thomas Coughlin, the former vice chairman of Wal-Mart, asked an Arkansas state court yesterday to dismiss the company’s legal efforts to void his multimillion dollar retirement package.

Attorneys for the former executive told the court that Wal-Mart cannot void the agreement because at his retirement, Coughlin and the company had signed a release preventing the company from pursuing him for "any and all liability for claims, causes of actions, demands, damages, attorney fees, expenses, compensation or other costs or losses of any nature."

Coughlin retired from his vice chairman’s position last year, and then resigned from the board of directors earlier this year amid charges of “gross misconduct” and that he was guilty of financial fraud and using company funds for his own personal purposes. He denied the charges, saying that funds he was accused of stealing actually were being used, with company knowledge, to pay off employees informing on unionization efforts.

Wal-Mart said yesterday that it is confident in the merits of its case against Coughlin.

In addition to being targeted by Wal-Mart, Coughlin also is the subject of a federal investigation.
KC's View:
At the moment, this all seems like preliminaries. We can’t wait for the real dirty laundry to get hauled out.