In the ongoing saga of German engine company Thielert AG, the firm’s insolvency administrator has sued the Mayer Brown law group in Texas state district court in Houston, alleging the firm was “grossly negligent” when it failed to file properly financing documents related to an $8 million loan Thielert had bought from a bank.
Dr. Achim Ahrendt, the insolvency administrator for Thielert AG, which started “insolvency proceedings” in Germany in 2008, seeks a minimum of $10 million in damages from the Chicago-based law firm. Ahrendt brings legal malpractice and professional negligence, breach of fiduciary duties, breach of contract and unjust enrichment causes of action against Mayer Brown, and also seeks attorney fees.
Ahrendt alleges that Mayer Brown was grossly negligent in representing Thielert, which manufactures aircraft engines and components, when Thielert bought a loan made to Superior Air Parts from PNC Bank in 2006. As a result of the firm’s negligence, Ahrendt claims, Thielert may not be able to recover all of the loan proceeds from Superior because Texas-based Superior filed for bankruptcy in 2008.
When Superior filed a petition for bankruptcy it also filed a proceeding against Thielert, seeking to avoid Thielert’s liens under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code because Thielert’s security interests were not properly perfected. Ahrendt alleges that, because of Mayer Brown’s negligence, Thielert’s claim is “relegated” to the position of an unsecured creditor instead of a secured creditor, in Superior’s bankruptcy.
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