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For a recap of the various Toyota recalls, visit our comprehensive guide

Toyota has run into some trouble in a lawsuit against a former employee. An independent arbitrator has found that the automaker can't bar the release of certain documents by claiming attorney-client privilege in a countersuit by Dimitrios Biller.

According to The Washington Post, attorneys working on a class-action lawsuit against Toyota claim that the company has known about issues of unintended acceleration in its vehicles since as early as 2003. The lawyers have reportedly discovered a field report written seven years ago by a technician that outlined an instance of unintended acceleration. The report allegedly called for immediate action due to how dangerous the problem could become and expressed concern about the potential frequency

According to Reuters, a federal judge has consolidated the majority of lawsuits filed against Toyota involving unintended acceleration. Over 100 such suits have been bundled together by U.S. District Judge James Selna, and temporary lead counsel has been chosen for both sides of the case. Expect a star-studded cast to show up for this one, including lawyers formerly involved with everything from Big Tobacco legislation to the Exxon Valdez oil spill.

There have been more than 80 lawsuits filed against Toyota in America alone since the Japanese company's Dark Days began. A group of attorneys, representing personal and commercial clients for claims ranging from death to loss of resale value, will argue before a federal panel to have the suits consolidated into less than four score.

Last Friday, Toyota's stock closed at $79.56. That represents a 12-percent drop in market capitalization. For those keeping track, that's a loss of $15 billion. Naturally, there are a number of none-too-pleased shareholders hanging on to their stock in the Japanese automaker.

"When we talked with Toyota owners, they all voiced the same desire – to drive the car back to the lot, hand them the keys and pick up a check." So says Steve Berman, a lawyer from Seattle who has filed a class action lawsuit against Toyota on behalf of "dozens" of owners in Arizona and Washington. Fat chance, right?

The hits keep on coming for Toyota, with reports of unintended acceleration multiplying like rabbits with aphrodisiacs and grandstanding of all sorts going on at every level. Orange County, California District Attorney Tony Rackauckas has added another layer to the cake with a lawsuit alleging Toyota sold cars it knew had problems.

2010 Toyota Prius – Click above for high-res image gallery

2010 Toyota Prius – Click above for high-res image gallery

According to Bloomberg, Toyota has been ordered by Texas Judge T. John Ward no to destroy any of its crash data, and research projects related to product liability or crashworthiness. The temporary restraining order, which is in effect until after a October 7 hearing (at which it will be determine if the order should be extended), stems from allegations from former Toyota lawyer Dimitrios Biller that the Japanese automaker withheld evidence in over 300 rollover lawsuits. Ward wrote of his decisi

As we recently wrote, Toyota has been ordered to pay the very hefty sum of $4.3 million to Paice LLC for patent infringement related to its Hybrid Synergy Drive. At that time, we mentioned that Solomon Technologies had also sued Toyota regarding its hybrid vehicle technology and was appealing a previous ruling that Toyota did not infringe on one of its patents. There is good news this time for Toyota, as Solomon's appeal was denied by a three-judge panel. Solomon still believes that its patent w

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