Jones Day Succeeds In First Ever UK Supreme Court Judgment

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 - 01:00

Jones Day London has been successful in the first judgment on appeal handed down by the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom. The case concerned the interpretation of the Security Trust Deed in Sigma Finance Corporation ("Sigma") which will have a dramatic impact on the recovery for many investment banks, hedge funds, and other secured creditors of Sigma.

Acting on behalf of a $500 million noteholder, Jones Day took the lead in the House of Lords in a bid to overturn a Court of Appeal ruling that Sigma's Receivers were obliged to distribute assets to certain creditors holding early maturing notes following an event of default, a ruling which would have led to no return for all other secured creditors who held notes maturing at a later date.The appeal was formulated on the basis that the Sigma assets should instead be distributed proportionally on a pari passu basis among all secured creditors, a construction favored by the Supreme Court.

Sigma, the first and largest structured investment vehicle, became insolvent with total liabilities in excess of $9 billion. Its assets, once valued at $27 billion, realized just $306 million at auction, crystallizing an enormous loss for its secured creditors who totalled in excess of $6 billion.

The Jones Day team included Adam Plainer, leader of the firm's Business Restructuring & Reorganization Practice in London, and Of Counsel Linton Bloomberg.

In October the San Francisco office of Jones Day was named 2009 Law Firm of the Year by the AIDS Legal Referral Panel at ALRP's From the Heart 26th Annual Reception. This award was given in recognition of the years of support and service that Jones Day has provided to ALRP since the San Francisco Office's inception in 2003. In accepting the award on behalf of the firm, Kevyn Orr, Chair of the Jones Day Diversity Task Force, commended ALRP for its important service to the community and he congratulated the San Francisco Office for its many contributions to ALRP. Robert Mittelstaedt, Partner-in-Charge of our San Francisco Office, and numerous other Jones Day partners, associates, and staff joined Mr. Orr in extending special recognition to San Francisco associates Brian McDonald and Noel Rodriguez for their service on the ALRP board of directors.

Jones Day is pleased to announce that Rick Bergstrom has joined the firm as a Labor & Employment partner in its San Diego Office. Mr. Bergstrom comes to Jones Day from the San Diego office of Morrison & Foertser where he was the co-chair of that firm's Employment & Labor practice.

Mr. Bergstrom's practice includes a variety of complex employment litigation matters in both federal and state court, including wage and hour class actions, trade secret litigation, and California Fair Employment and Housing Act matters. He also advises retailers, restaurant companies, and other businesses on public accommodation access laws, including Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act and California's Unruh Act.