(Adds comment from U.S. State Department, paragraphs 9-13)
* Opposition frontrunner warns of ballot fraud (Adds details on victory claim, fraud charge)
NEW YORK, April 17 - Steve Farris runs a $33 billion Texas oil and gas company and turns, for advice, to a bearded Vermont environmentalist.
NEW YORK, April 17 - Ford Motor Co and IBM Corp will again have to face a U.S. lawsuit claiming they encouraged race-based human rights abuses in apartheid-era South Africa, despite a series of recent court decisions limiting the right to pursue such cases.
* S&P 500 scores biggest weekly percentage gain since July
No related earnings announcements are currently scheduled within the next 7 days.