United States District Court, S.D. New York
CIMC RAFFLES OFFSHORE (SINGAPORE) LIMITED, and YANTAI CIMC RAFFLES OFFSHORE LIMITED, Petitioners,
SCHAHIN HOLDING S.A., SCHAHIN ENGENHARIA S.A., SEA BISCUIT INTERNATIONAL INC., BLACK GOLD DRILLING LLC, BAERFIELD DRILLING LLC, and SORATU DRILLING LLC, Respondents
Decided April 30, 2013
For CIMC Raffles Offshore (Singapore) Limited, Yantai CIMC Raffles Offshore Limited, Petitioners: Dan J. Schulman, LEAD ATTORNEY, Schulman Blackwell LLP, New York, NY; Joseph P. Moodhe, LEAD ATTORNEY, David W. Rivkin, Debevoise & Plimpton, LLP (NYC), New York, NY.
For Portigon AG, Interested Party: Rachel Penski Fissell, Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP, Los Angeles, CA.
For MS Drillship I S.A., Interested Party: William J.F. Roll, III, LEAD ATTORNEY, Shearman & Sterling LLP (NY), New York, NY.
JED S. RAKOFF, U.S.D.J.
Petitioners CIMC Raffles Offshore (Singapore) Ltd. and Yantai CIMC Raffles Offshore Ltd. (collectively, " CIMC" ), two offshore oil rig construction yards, constructed two semi-submersible drilling vessels for respondents Baerfield Drilling LLC (" BDL" ) and Soratu Drilling LLC (" SDL" ). See Supp. Decl. of Nwamaka G. Ejebe filed Feb. 15, 2013, Ex. 1 (Final
Award of Arbitrators). During the course of construction and pursuant to two " Advance and Equity Conversion Agreements," CIMC loaned $66,125,587 to all six respondents, which failed to repay the loans. Id. The terms of the Agreements provide for mandatory arbitration of disputes under the Agreements in New York City, and on December 26, 2012, an arbitral tribunal awarded $69,470,777.41 to CIMC for repayment of the loans and pre-award interest, as well as $13,206.28 in arbitration costs. Id. at 21-22.
On January 2, 2013, CIMC filed a petition seeking confirmation of the arbitration award, interest, costs and fees. On March 13, 2013, the Court granted judgment against three of the respondents, BDL, SDL, and Black Gold Drilling LLC (" Black Gold" ), their owner, see Order, 13 Civ. 52, ECF No. 21 (filed Mar. 13, 2013), and on April 21, 2013, the Court granted judgment against the remaining three respondents, Schahin Holding S.A., Schahin Engenharia S.A., and Sea Biscuit International Inc., see Order, 13 Civ. 52, ECF No. 53 (S.D.N.Y. filed Apr. 22, 2013).
Meanwhile, on April 10, 2013, CIMC filed a motion seeking an Order that would (1) require Black Gold, BDL, and SDL to immediately turn over to CIMC funds sufficient to pay the judgment; (2) require Black Gold, should sufficient funds not be turned over, to transfer to CIMC its membership interests in BDL and SDL; and (3) restrain Schahin Holding, Schahin Engenharia, and Sea Biscuit from transferring or selling any property or assets until they pay sums sufficient to satisfy the judgment in full. The Court heard oral argument on these motions on April 18, 2013.
CIMC's first and third motions are unopposed. As to the first, under N.Y. C.P.L.R. § 5225(a), incorporated through Rule 69(a)(1) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, it is well established that " a New York court with personal jurisdiction over a defendant may order him to turn over out-of-state property."
Koehler v. Bank of Bermuda, Ltd., 12 N.Y.3d 533, 541, 911 N.E.2d 825, 883 N.Y.S.2d 763 (2009). Here, this Court has personal jurisdiction over respondents because they contractually agreed to arbitrate in New York, thereby agreeing to submit themselves to the jurisdiction of New York courts. See 9 U.S.C. § 9 (" Notice of the application [for confirmation of an arbitration award] shall be served upon the adverse party, and thereupon the court shall have jurisdiction of such party as though he had appeared generally in the proceeding." ). Thus, this Court may properly direct, and hereby so orders, Black Gold, SDL and BDL to bring into New York and turn over to CIMC funds sufficient to satisfy the judgment issued against them on March 13, 2013.
As to the third of CIMC's requests, the Clerk of the Court expeditiously entered judgment against Schahin Holding, Schahin Engenharia, and Sea Biscuit International on April 24, 2013, mooting in some respects CIMC's request for a pre-judgment restraining order under Rule 69 and C.P.L.R. § 5229. However, the Court notes that, since CIMC has now also obtained judgments against Schahin Holding, Schahin Engenharia, and Sea Biscuit International, CIMC may serve ...