Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which was criticized for allocating $16.7 billion to pay employees for the first nine months of the year after receiving money from a government bailout program, was sued by a pension fund, the fund said.

The Security Police and Fire Professionals of America Retirement Fund said that Goldman Sachs' board breached its fiduciary duties by failing to administer bonus plans in the best interests of the company and its shareholders. The lawsuit was filed Monday in state court in New York, the fund said.

The pension fund claims the total employee payouts for 2009 are estimated to be more than $22 billion including bonuses. The payments are based on "a trillion-dollar investment made by the American taxpayers" to stabilize the financial industry, not on the efforts of Goldman Sachs' employees, the fund said.

Lucas van Praag, a Goldman Sachs spokesman, said, "We think the suit is entirely without merit."

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