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Ex-Tyco director settles lawsuit for $5.6 million

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A former Tyco International Ltd director has agreed to pay New Jersey $5.6 million to settle a seven-year-old lawsuit alleging securities fraud.

The state accused Frank Walsh, who had been an independent director, of taking an improper payment that was not disclosed to investors, in connection with Tyco's 2001 purchase of commercial finance company CIT Group Inc.

New Jersey sued Tyco, its auditors and several individuals in 2002, alleging that state pension funds lost money because of fraud, insider trading at Tyco, and the failure to disclose various loan benefits and accounting improprieties.

Anne Milgram, the state's attorney general, said the settlement reflects her office's commitment to "protecting the state's investments from fraud, holding corporations and individuals accountable."

Tyco settled with the state for $73.25 million in April 2008. The auditor PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP and a Bermuda affiliate settled the following March for $5.85 million.

Walsh did not admit wrongdoing in agreeing to settle. His lawyer Laurence Greenwald, from the firm Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, said New Jersey's statement was accurate.

New Jersey still has a pending lawsuit against former Tyco Chief Executive L. Dennis Kozlowski and former Tyco Chief Financial Officer Mark Swartz.

Both are in prison after a Manhattan jury convicted them in 2005 of stealing from the company and defrauding investors.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel)