NU Online News Service, April 16, 10:31 a.m. – John Hancock Financial Services Inc., Boston, is coming down hard on Enron Corp., Houston.

Three of the company’s subsidiaries have sued Enron’s officers and directors in the U.S. District Court in Houston.

The suit also names Enron’s auditor, Arthur Andersen, Chicago, Hancock says.

The suit seeks restitution for losses the subsidiaries suffered on $215 million in privately placed Enron investments.

The subsidiaries are Investors Partner Life Insurance Company, John Hancock Life Insurance Company and John Hancock Variable Life Insurance Company.

The Hancock subsidiaries are seeking court permission to represent a class that would include many major U.S. and foreign institutions that bought Enron securities through private placements.

Hancock Chairman David D’Alessandro blasts Enron’s leaders in a statement included in the press release announcing the suit.

“We are alleging that Enron’s officers and directors were directly complicit in the fraud perpetrated against us,” D’Alessandro says. “It is our belief that they personally profited from this fraud and, as a result, it is entirely appropriate to file the action directly against them.”