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NYSE seatholder charged after alleged threat call

September 27, 2005

By Scott Malone

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A New York Stock Exchange member
accused of threatening the life of another member over the
NYSE’s proposed acquisition of Archipelago Holdings Inc. was
charged on Tuesday with aggravated harassment and attempted
coercion.

Edward Reiss, 65, could face up to a year in prison if
convicted of the misdemeanor charges, according to Sherry
Hunter, a spokeswoman for Manhattan District Attorney Robert
Morgenthau.

Reiss’ attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr. of Morvillo Abramowitz,
Grand, Iason, & Silberberg said the message was
“mischaracterized” and was not intended as a threat.

According to court papers filed in New York City Criminal
Court, Reiss left a threatening voice mail message on July 19
at the office of a lawyer representing seatholder William
Higgins. Higgins had filed a legal challenge to the proposed
NYSE-Archipelago deal, claiming it undervalued the 200-year-old
exchange.

According to the court papers, the message said, “If this
deal doesn’t go through, (Higgins) better have somebody start
his car, because he’s out of his mind.”

“The statement attributed to Mr. Reiss has been
mischaracterized as a threat,” said Vance. “It was not. The
statement was a figure of speech used in a voice mail message
in a context of a longstanding business dispute over the merits
of a deal to have the stock exchange go public.”

Reiss was arrested on August 29, and was released on his
own recognizance. A resident of Scarsdale, New York, he has
been a member of the NYSE since 1973. A trial was scheduled for
November 7.

A spokesman for Higgins did not return a call seeking
comment.




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