NU Online News Service, Feb. 2, 2004, 5:35 p.m. EST – Metropolitan Mortgage & Securities Co. Inc., Spokane, Wash., says it plans to seek bankruptcy court protection next week.[@@]

Metropolitan’s insurance company subsidiaries and the insurance subsidiaries of its securities arm will continue normal operations, and they will not be part of the Chapter 11 reorganization filing, Metropolitan says.

Metropolitan says it hopes to reorganize its finances by giving its debenture holders and other creditors ownership of the reorganized entity.

Regulators and lawyers for investors have accused Metropolitan of using misleading tactics to sell company notes and other company securities that now appear to be worthless.

Metropolitan has no connection with MetLife Inc., New York, or MetLife’s insurance subsidiaries or mortgage lending operations.