New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo filed civil securities fraud charges against former Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis and former Chief Financial Officer Joseph Price, alleging they decided not to disclose mounting losses at Merrill Lynch & Co. before getting shareholder approval to acquire the Wall Street firm.

Shareholders approved the purchase on Dec. 5, 2008, not knowing that Merrill had accumulated more than $16 billion in "actual losses" for the fourth quarter of 2008, according to the attorney general. The bank did not say anything about the mounting losses until the U.S. in January 2009 provided the bank with an additional $20 billion to absorb Merrill.

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