Coria, vitamin maker settle suit alleging steroid contamination

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. -- Tennis star Guillermo Coria on
Wednesday settled his lawsuit against a New Jersey-based vitamin
maker he blamed for a positive steroid test that cost him millions
in earnings.

Terms between Coria and Universal Nutrition, which had denied
making tainted pills, were not disclosed.

The deal came as the 25-year-old Argentine was to testify on the
second day of the trial.

Coria had charged that a contaminated multivitamin not only kept
him from competing for seven months in 2001 and 2002, but
besmirched his reputation and cost him at least $10 million in
prize money, bonuses, appearance fees and endorsements.

Coria, once ranked No. 3 in the world, did not speak to
reporters as he left the courtroom. Lawyers for him and the company
declined to give any details on the deal.

The deal was announced by state Superior Court Judge Bradley J.
Ferencz after about five hours of closed-door negotiations between
the two sides, which at times appeared to include Coria and members
of his family.

The judge said the parties agree with the finding of a tribunal
of the ATP, the governing body of men's tennis, that the positive
test was caused by "inadvertent and unknowing ingestion of a
banned substance."

"Parties further agree that Universal's products were safe as
formulated to the label, and met all FDA standards," Ferencz said.

Court was then adjourned. Coria hugged his lawyers, shook hands
with Universal personnel, and the judge, who said, "Good luck to