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Lehman Brothers Australia files for US court protection
International firm comes under fire in Federal Court:

Lehman Brothers Australia files for US court protection

Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc's Australian subsidiary is seeking bankruptcy protection under US law.

The firm said its assets could include $1.3 billion to cover investors' losses.

Court papers filed Friday with the US Bankruptcy Court in New York reveal Lehmann Brothers Australia said it has $1.3 billion in claims against Lehman's holding company for losses related to structured finance arrangements, known as synthetic collateralised-debt obligations (CDOs), the Wall Street Journal reports.

If the claims is recognised by a US judge, the bankruptcy filing puts the brakes on lawsuits and stops creditors from seizing the company's assets in the United States, the WSJ reports.

Lehman was the fourth largest investment bank before it filed for the biggest bankruptcy in US history in 15 September 2008.

The company is embarking on a $64 billion liquidation plan after more than three years in bankruptcy court. The firm has raised more the $20 billion in cash so far.

In the papers filed last week, the company is asking the US Bankruptcy Court to recognised the proceeding commenced in Australia as a "foreign main proceeding".

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