District Judge Lorna G. Schofield

 

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Until 2009 Sea Trade owned the ship M/V Athena. Claims of the Athena’s wrongful arrest, breach of fiduciary duty, and frustration of corporate purpose were raised in a suit arising from a family dispute over Sea Trade’s ownership and control. The court’s Aug. 24, 2016 judgment held for Sea Trade and coplaintiff Peters on the fiduciary duty breach claim, and dismissed the wrongful arrest and frustration of corporate purpose claims. It ordered defendant Coutsodontis to forfeit his shares in Sea Trade and referred the matter to a magistrate judge for an inquest on the amount, if any, he was due based on his 50 percent interest in Sea Trade. The court denied plaintiffs’ motions to remove the time constraints for Coutsodontis’s forfeiture of Sea Trade shares, and to eliminate the referral for an inquest into the amount due Coutsodontis. In light of Coutsodontis’s proof of Peters’ unclean hands the time imposed on his forfeiture of Sea Trade shares was reasonable and within the court’s authority to grant equitable relief. Among other things, although Coutsodontis’s breach of duty to Sea Trade warranted forfeiture, to order forfeiture without a time constraint would provide Peters a windfall, the full proceeds from the sale of the Athena.

District Judge Lorna G. Schofield

 

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Until 2009 Sea Trade owned the ship M/V Athena. Claims of the Athena’s wrongful arrest, breach of fiduciary duty, and frustration of corporate purpose were raised in a suit arising from a family dispute over Sea Trade’s ownership and control. The court’s Aug. 24, 2016 judgment held for Sea Trade and coplaintiff Peters on the fiduciary duty breach claim, and dismissed the wrongful arrest and frustration of corporate purpose claims. It ordered defendant Coutsodontis to forfeit his shares in Sea Trade and referred the matter to a magistrate judge for an inquest on the amount, if any, he was due based on his 50 percent interest in Sea Trade. The court denied plaintiffs’ motions to remove the time constraints for Coutsodontis’s forfeiture of Sea Trade shares, and to eliminate the referral for an inquest into the amount due Coutsodontis. In light of Coutsodontis’s proof of Peters’ unclean hands the time imposed on his forfeiture of Sea Trade shares was reasonable and within the court’s authority to grant equitable relief. Among other things, although Coutsodontis’s breach of duty to Sea Trade warranted forfeiture, to order forfeiture without a time constraint would provide Peters a windfall, the full proceeds from the sale of the Athena.