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GOMEZ v. KARAVIAS U.S.A. INC.

October 2, 1975

Jose E. GOMEZ, Plaintiff,
v.
KARAVIAS U.S.A. INC. et al., Defendants



The opinion of the court was delivered by: GRIESA

GRIESA, District Judge.

 This is a seaman's action under the Jones Act, 46 U.S.C. § 688, and the general maritime law. In addition to tort remedies, plaintiff seeks maintenance and cure.

 The action was commenced in March 1973. In September 1973 plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the action on the basis of an apparent settlement.On January 9, 1974 I vacated the dismissal and ordered the action reinstated, on the representation of defendants that they had never agreed to the settlement and the request of plaintiff that the dismissal be vacated.

 Plaintiff subsequently filed a motion for summary judgment on the claim for maintenance and cure. Defendants have filed a motion to dismiss the complaint on the following grounds:

 
(a) That the doctrine forum non conveniens applies to the claims against defendant St. Grigorousa Maritime Co. Ltd.;
 
(b) That defendants Karavias (U.S.A.) Inc. and Karavias (London) Ltd. "are agents for a disclosed principal";
 
(c) That defendant Karavias (London) Ltd. has never been served.

 Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment is denied. Defendants' motions are also denied, except that the action is dismissed as against Karavias (London) Ltd. on the ground that this defendant has not been properly served with process.

 I.

 Extensive discussion of plaintiff's motion for summary judgment on his maintenance and cure claim is unnecessary. It is sufficient to say that the record before me does not permit a finding that the claim has been established beyond a triable issue of fact.

 II.

 Although the motion of defendant St. Grigorousa Maritime Co. Ltd. was originally cast in terms of forum non conveniens, the motion actually has two aspects. With respect to the Jones Act claim, the argument is actually that there is a lack of jurisdiction. It is only with respect to the claims under the general maritime law that the doctrine of forum non conveniens in fact applies.

 I will first consider the problem under the Jones Act. The question here is whether there were or were not "substantial contacts between the transaction involved in the case and the United States" within the meaning of the controlling decisions, Moncada v. Lemuria Shipping Corp., 491 F.2d 470, 472 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 417 U.S. 947, 94 S. Ct. 3072, 41 L. Ed. 2d 667 (1974); Bartholomew v. Universe Tankships, Inc., 263 F.2d 437 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 359 U.S. 1000, 79 S. Ct. 1138, 3 L. Ed. 2d 1030 (1959). I hold that there were such substantial contacts sufficient for jurisdiction under the Jones Act.

 Plaintiff is a citizen and resident of Honduras. Defendant St. Grigorousa Maritime Co. Ltd. is a Liberian corporation and the owner of the M/S ST. NICHOLAS II, the vessel on which the alleged injury occurred. The vessel is registered in Liberia. St. Grigorousa Maritime Co. Ltd. is part of a far-flung shipping operation ultimately controlled by Anastasios E. Karavias and possibly members of his family. Mr. Karavias apparently has his principal residence in Greece, although he has an apartment ...


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