Cases & Deals

Petrocom obtains reversal of maritime attachment order

Clients Petrocom Energy Limited

Jones Day successfully represented Petrocom Energy Limited ("Petrocom") in vacating an ex parte maritime attachment order and dismissing a complaint filed in the Southern District of New York by China National Chartering Co., Ltd. ("China National"). The action and attachment order were filed to secure assets for a potential judgment in an arbitration between the parties pending in London, England. After obtaining the ex parte attachment order, China National attached electronic fund transfers ("EFTs") originated by Petrocom while the transactions were processed by intermediary banks in Manhattan. After Jones Day appeared for Petrocom, the Court issued an order to show cause why the attachment order should not be vacated and the complaint should not be dismissed in light of a decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Shipping Corp. of India, Ltd. v. Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd., ___ F. 3d ___, 2009 WL 3319675 (2d Cir. Oct. 16, 2009), which held that EFTs are not the property of either the originator of the transaction or the beneficiary while the funds are in the possession of an intermediary bank. Petrocom argued that under this decision and another, Hawknet, Ltd. v. Overseas Shipping Agencies, ___ F. 3d ___, 2009 WL 4016628 (2d Cir. Nov. 13, 2009), which held that the rule announced in Jaldhi Overseas applied retroactively, the attachment order should be vacated and the complaint should be dismissed. In a decision issued on December 21, 2009, the District Court agreed with Petrocom, rejected each of China National's arguments that it made in a lengthy submission, and vacated the attachment order and dismissed the complaint.

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