Given all the attention we’ve been heaping on third-party litigation financing, we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out a provocative decision issued Wednesday by a Florida state appeals court. The 3rd District Court of Appeal reversed a trial court and held that a third-party investor who funded an unsuccessful case against Fresh Del Monte Produce and its chairman and CEO is liable for the defendants’ attorney fees and costs.

The underlying suit involved the sale of Fresh Del Monte in the mid-1990s. The plaintiffs, shareholders in Fresh Del Monte’s former parent, claimed that CEO Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh rigged the process with a bribe. In 2006, a jury found in favor of the defendants, who were represented by Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and Boies, Schiller & Flexner. That verdict was upheld on appeal.

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