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Siemens Refuses To Pay To Ship 177 Wind Turbine Blades From China To Texas And Gets Sued

By Matthew Russell Lee

SDNY COURTHOUSE, August 29 – To ship 513 wind turbine generator blades from Shanghai to Corpus Christi, Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy said it would pay BBC Chartering Carriers $2.7 million. Then after having paid for only 336 blades, Siemens stopped paying. BBC Chartering Carriers sued and appeared on August 29 before U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York Judge Gregory H. Woods.

   Judge Woods asked each side what law should apply. The two lawyers said they had both worked in maritime law for some time; Siemens said it wants to file a motion to dismiss. Judge Woods set a schedule and said he was looking forward to construing the contract.

Back in May in another SDNY maritime case, kiwis that were frozen and damaged while being shipped from Italy to Newark, New Jersey were the subject of a proceeding before Judge Woods. The amount being sued for is $41,000.

  Judge Woods, who is overseeing among other things a multi-defendant Hunts Point, Bronx crack conspiracy prosecution, asked the parties if they would consent to moving the case to a Magistrate judge. They did not answer. So Judge Woods ordered them again, and they said no. On the Friday before Memorial Day weekend, in a courtroom otherwise empty but for Inner City Press, they appeared.

  Porto Pavino LCC of Harrison, New York wanted to ship 2500 cases of fresh kiwis from Genoa, Italy to Newark, New Jersey in 2018. They paid A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S to do it, aboard the M/V Sealand Illinois. But in the two week crossing of the Atlantic something happened.

  The kiwis were supposed to be kept at 0.0 degrees Celsius. But when they arrived in Newark they were, in fact, frozen. The complaint says that "following the said temperature abuse, the consignment was not in the same good order and condition as when first received by the Defendant, but instead had suffered physical damage while in said Defendant's care, custody and control."

  Now the lawsuit for $41,000. Judge Woods asked if exchanging basic discovery will help them settle the case. Inner City Press will continue to cover this Case of the Frozen Kiwis. It is Porto Pavino LLC v. A.P. Moller-Maersk, 19-cv-2029.

Back on May 7 after a New York based shipper sued Ohio-based Specialty Processing LLC in the SDNY, the main obstacle to settling the case it emerged on May 7 is the defendants desire not to, by settling, consent to jurisdiction. 

  SDNY Judge John G. Koeltl was quick to say that settlement would not imply that the case ever had jurisdiction. But the lawyer for the shipper MTS Logistics said his client would like the court to remain involved to enforce the settlement. A pause ensued. (The case is 19-cv-1973.)

  Finally Judge Koeltl, who often seems eager to kick cases up to White Plains -- as in the case of the rogue collections marshals, see below -- or down to magistrates, suggested that a settlement could involve default judgment in the case of non compliance, with the default judgment to be sought in the courts of Ohio, whether Southern or Northern District as he put it. 

 All roads lead to the SDNY, but not all vessels are welcome. We'll have more on this.

Back on April 18 the systemic scam of marshals seizing money for factoring companies from out of state banks emerged with Inner City Press again the only media present in the SDNY courtroom of Judge Koeltl. A reciever in from Detroit was contesting a factoring company using NYC Marshal Beagle to seize money from Michigan's Comerica Bank. The factoring company's lawyer, with the same last name, said it was fine since Comerica like BB&T - the example he gave - use the New York courts, so should they turn over money. The marshal's lawyer's argument were less clear, but they are due on June 14. Inner City Press will cover this - and BB&T.

 Earlier on April 18 before SDNY Judge Koeltl a doctor facing an NYPD parking ticket and reportedly saying "I'm the hero" back in 2016 resurfaced before Judge as a police brutality jury trial. Rachel Wellner was at the plaintiff's table and NYPD officer Vega was on the stand, getting asked Didn't you touch near her breast? Wellner was a breast surgeon at Montefiore Hospital in The Bronx but got fired after what the tabloids called her "cop ram" incident. On April 18, Wellner took the stand and by day's end was grilled by the City on when she called the New York Post, and about saying she was led out of the precinct in a chain gang. She said based on the photo the chain gang must have come later. She said the New York Post called her, and she asked them not to publish her name. They've since reported on and excerpted from what they called her "semi-autobiographical novel." The judge has told the jurors not to seek out any information on the case - or presumably the novel. They will not sit on Good Friday but resume on Monday. By the end of April 18 her lawyers had used seven hours and 50 minutes; the City had used three hours and 32 minutes. Inner City Press stayed another two hours for a crack sales plea agreement, a pharmacist pleading not guilty to oxy sales, a sentenced man staying out for months taking his wife's narcotics and finally a lawsuit on controversial seizures by New York marshals of out of state debtors' assets. Watch this site.

When Wellner began she made a point of immediately telling the jury that she organized medical missions to Nicaragua and that along with his $450,000 salary at Montefiore she was able to be back with the Latino community she feel in love with. The government / defense did not object. Across the hall an insider trading prosecution got interesting - but Inner City Press will return to the Wellner case.  Back on April 16, the second day of the trial, Vega's partner Nicolett Davodian was on the stand and her deposition and previously filed reports were being used against her. When did she start saying that Vega's knees were swollen? That Wellner had allegedly called all female NYPD officer a derogatory word for lesbian? And the now somewhat famous, "I'm the hero, the cops are not heroes"? There were many I can't recalls. Coming next is the two officers' supervisor, who allegedly reprimanded Davodian for gloating to Wellner upon subsequent full arrest, Are you happy now you crazy f*cking b*tch? Inner City Press will be there - watch this site.

Both the Daily New and the New York Post at the time mocked her for saying she was the hero and the NYPD was not. Her civil complaint recites her voluntary work in Nicaragua and Israel. SDNY Judge John G. Koeltl at the end of questioning on April 15 told the jury to be sure not to check social media (how realistic that is today is a question), then held several off the record sidebars with the case's attorneys, followed by pleasantries with visitors from Australia. We'll have more on this trial.

   Earlier on April 15 former NYPD officer Gerard Scparta pled guilty on April 12 to theft of public funds in the form of SSI disability benefits and to tax evasion.  SDNY Judge Alison Nathan set his sentencing date for July 16; the US Attorney's office has agreed to a sentence guideline between 30 and 37 months in prison. As part of the plea ritual Judge Nathan asked if the events had taken place in the SDNY. First there was mention of Staten Island - which is the Eastern District - then that the Social Security office Scparta dealt with was in Orange County, in the SDNY. The strip club where he work while claiming to be disabled was in Manhattan. But there's more: as recounted in the complaint that was superseded on April 15, " a cooperating witness ("CW-1") 2 , I have learned the following, in substance and in part: a. Between in or about 1987 and in or about 1990, GERARD SCPARTA, the defendant, and CW-1 both worked together as NYPD officers on a taskforce in the 1st Precinct in Manhattan. b. Between approximately in or about 1992 and in or about 2012, CW-1 referred NYPD police officers to CC-1 so that CC-1 could assist the officers to defraud the SSA by submitting applications for SSD that contained false statements regarding purported disabilities. Because officers who had sustained legitimate injuries while working could still perform certain types of work, many of the officers referred to CC-1 by CW-1 falsely stated to the SSA that they were depressed and/or had mental health issues in order to certify that they were incapable of performing any gainful activity. In exchange for referring these officers to CC-1, CW-1 received four months of the disability benefits received by any officer who was approved to receive benefits. c. In or about 1997, approximately one year prior to SCPARTA's submission of an application for SSD benefits to the SSA, CW-1 referred SCPARTA to CC-1. Specifically, CW-1 escorted SCPARTA to CC-l's residence for meetings on approximately three or four occasions over the course of a year." There is a footnote: " Like CC-1, CW-1 has pleaded guilty to grand larceny in New York State Court for his involvement in this scheme to defraud the SSA. CW-1 is cooperating with law enforcement with the hope of receiving a more lenient sentence." Inner City Press aims to have more on this, and on the two counts in the superseding information that Scparta pled not guilty to on Monday.

Back on April 12 when Will Baez came up for sentencing on he faced a mandatory minimum ten years in prison for five kilos of heroin and a .45 handgun and ammo in his Bronx apartment. The courtroom of SDNY Judge Ronnie Abrams was packed with dozens of family and friends, and Baez spoke about his seven year old daughter and dream of opening an auto body shop. His lawyer spoke of conditions in the MCC: 26 men on 13 bunk beds in a unit with one toilet and one shower and rodents in the walls. There was no discussion of the safety value provisions of the First Step Act, which later in the day got a reduction for another defendant caught with five kilos of what he thought was heroin. Judge Abrams showed those in the courtroom the sentencing guidelines book and said Baez need not be defined by the worst day in his life. But ten years are ten years. He waved as they led him to the elevator of 40 Foley Square in shackles.


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