Lewis Katz testified yesterday that when he teamed up with George Norcross III to buy the Daily News, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and Philly.com last year, he insisted on “blocking rights” to major decisions affecting the company. He is seeking injunctions that would restore fired Inquirer editor Bill Marimow and remove publisher Robert J. Hall from his position.

Mr. Hall fired Mr. Marimow in October when Mr. Marimow refused to fire three top editors and demote two others. Mr. Katz argues that he should have had to approve this decision, but Mr. Norcross claims that it was an editorial decision, with which the owners pledged not to get involved.

Nancy Phillips, an editor at The Inquirer and Mr. Katz's longtime companion, testified that she was involved in the decision to hire Marimow. She said the owners' pledge was carefully outlined so that hiring and firing an editor was a business decision, not editorial meddling.

David H. Pittinsky, a Ballard Spahr attorney representing Hall, proposed that Mr. Katz and Mr. Norcross changed their minds about who would supervise Marimow when they agreed to have him report directly to the publisher.

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