The Law Firm Of Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP Announces That The Class Period For The Shareholder Class Action Filed Against The Royal Dutch/Shell Group, Royal Dutch Petroleum Company, And The Shell Transport And Trading Company, PLC Has Been Extended To March 22, 2004 -- RD, SC

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Radnor, Pennsylvania, UNITED STATES


BALA CYNWYD, Pa., March 24, 2004 (PRIMEZONE) -- The following statement was issued today by the law firm of Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP:

The Class Period for the class action lawsuit, filed in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, on behalf of all securities purchasers of Royal Dutch Petroleum Company ("Royal Dutch") (NYSE:RD) and/or The Shell Transport and Trading Company, PLC ("Shell Transport") (NYSE:SC) (collectively "Royal Dutch/Shell") has been extended to March 22, 2004. The Class Period for this case is now December 3, 1999 and March 22, 2004, inclusive. If you are a member of the class described above, you may, not later than March 26, 2004, move the Court to serve as lead plaintiff of the class, if you so choose.

If you wish to discuss this action or have any questions concerning this notice or your rights or interests with respect to these matters, please contact Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP (Marc A. Topaz, Esq. or Stuart L. Berman, Esq.) toll free at 1-888-299-7706 or 1-610-667-7706, or via e-mail at info@sbclasslaw.com.

The complaint charges defendants Royal Dutch, Shell Transport, Shell Petroleum N.V., the Shell Petroleum Limited, Maarten van der Bergh, Judy Boynton , Malcolm Brinded, S.L. Miller, Harry J.M. Roels, Paul D. Skinner, M. Moody Stuart, Jeroen van der Veer, and Philip R. Watts with violations of Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder. Between December 3, 1999 and January 9, 2004, the defendants issued a series of material misrepresentations to the market concerning the Company's financial standing. More specifically, the defendants' statements during the Class Period were materially false and misleading because they failed to disclose and/or misrepresented the following adverse facts, among others: (1) that Royal Dutch/Shell had overstated its proved oil and gas reserve figures by 20%; (2) that Royal Dutch/Shell accomplished the overstatement by including in its proved oil and gas reserves figures, when its venture partners did not, estimates from the Gorgon Joint Venture in Australia and the Nigerian Projects in Africa when such projects did not meet industry and SEC standards for proved reverses; (3) that the inclusion of Gorgon Joint Venture in Australia and the Nigerian Projects in Africa and other projects was accomplished through the booking of its proved oil and gas reversed figures on the basis of initial letters of intent rather than on the basis of when such projects had been contracted; and (4) as a result, Royal Dutch/Shell's true market value was materially overstated at all relevant times.

On January 9, 2004, Royal Dutch/Shell announced that, following internal reviews, some proved hydrocarbon reserves would be recategorized. The total non recurring recategorization, relative to the proved reserves as stated at December 31, 2002, represented 3.9 billion barrels of oil equivalent ("boe") of proved reserves, or 20% of proved reserves at that date. Over 90% of the total change is a reduction in the proved undeveloped category; the balance is a reduction in the proved developed category. Additionally, the Company stated that of the recategorization, two thirds (2.7 billion barrels) relates to crude oil and natural gas liquids, and one third (1.2 billion boe or 7.2 trillion standard cubic feet ) to natural gas. Morever, Royal Dutch/Shell indicated that the FAS69 standardized measure of discounted future cash flows associated with the proved reserves would be impacted.

On news of this shares of Shell Transport fell 6.9%, or $3.12 per share, on heavy volume to close at $41.69 per share on January 9, 2004. Additionally, shares of Royal Dutch fell 7.8%, or $4.15 per share, on heavy volume to close at $48.61 per share on January 9, 2004.

Plaintiff seeks to recover damages on behalf of class members and is represented by the law firm of Schiffrin & Barroway, which prosecutes class actions in both state and federal courts throughout the country. Schiffrin & Barroway is a driving force behind corporate governance reform, and has recovered in excess of a billion dollars on behalf of institutional and high net worth individual investors. For more information about Schiffrin & Barroway, or to sign up to participate in this action online, please visit http://www.sbclasslaw.com.

If you are a member of the class described above, you may, not later than March 26, 2004, move the Court to serve as lead plaintiff of the class, if you so choose. In order to serve as lead plaintiff, however, you must meet certain legal requirements. You may retain Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP, or other counsel of your choice, to serve as your counsel in this action.



        

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