Former client hits Ince with $35m action

A former client of Ince & Co is attempting to seize $35m (£19.8m) of the firm’s assets as part of a multimillion-dollar claim against the shipping specialists.

Blue Strim Maritime launched the $23m (£13m) negligence suit in May 2005, as first revealed by The Lawyer (18 July 2005), alleging that Ince mishandled an arbitration with defunct Romanian state shipping carrier Romline and that it was simultaneously acting for Romline creditors.

The claim is due to be heard in 2008. In the meantime, Blue Strim said it has filed a petition to secure its claim through the “conservatory arrest of the assets” of Ince up to a value of $35m.

Blue Strim claims it needs the assets because Ince’s funds are “totally inadequate, or even nonexistent, placing our claim in obvious jeopardy”.

The petition will be heard in Athens on 18 January.

Blue Strim’s parallel criminal complaint against seven Ince lawyers was dismissed by a Greek court last year.

Ince’s Greece managing partner Jonathan Elvey said the firm was continuing to vigorously defend the claim. Blue Strim did not respond to requests for comment.