A U.S. judge on Monday narrowed but refused to dismiss a lawsuit seeking to hold Deutsche Bank AG (>> Deutsche Bank AG) liable to investors, including dozens of portfolios from BlackRock Inc (>> BlackRock, Inc.) and Pacific Investment Management Co, for losses on poorly underwritten residential mortgage-backed securities.
The proposed class-action lawsuit sought to recover "significant monetary damages" arising from Deutsche Bank's alleged "failure to discharge its essential duties" as trustee of 62 trusts created between 2004 and 2008, and which issued notes backed by about $90.3 billion of home loans.
In a docket entry, U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman in Manhattan granted Deutsche Bank's bid to dismiss conflict-of-interest claims but denied its request to dismiss representations-and-warranties, servicer-notification and event-of-default claims.
The judge said he would explain his reasoning at a Feb. 2 hearing and consider additional claims he has yet to decide.
Deutsche Bank did not immediately respond to requests for comment. According to their amended complaint, the plaintiffs own more than $2.6 billion of notes issued by the 62 trusts.
Furman took over the case in June from U.S. District Judge Richard Berman, who had dismissed other claims last January. Among the other plaintiffs are funds run by Prudential Investments, court records show.
The lawsuit is one of many accusing bond trustees such as Deutsche Bank of shirking their responsibilities, including notifying lenders of loan defects and telling investors when defaults occur.
It is separate from Deutsche Bank's completion last week of a $7.2 billion settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice over its sale of defective mortgage securities prior to the 2008 financial crisis.
The case is BlackRock Core Bond Portfolio et al v Deutsche Bank National Trust Co et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 14-09367.
(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)