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Favorable Verdict on Behalf of Local Offshore Service Company 

Miles P. Clements, Joseph E. Lee, III, and Brandon K. Thibodeaux recently secured a favorable verdict defending maritime clients, International Offshore Services, L.L.C. and International Marine, L.L.C. (“International”), in litigation arising from a deep water archaeological survey conducted in the Gulf of Mexico from a vessel owned and operated by International. Eastern District of Louisiana Judge Lance M. Africk oversaw the comprehensive two week jury trial.

The dispute arose out of the November 2, 2012 surveying operation in which International’s customer Tesla Offshore, L.L.C. chartered it to pull a sonar fish in deep water. The sonar fish struck one of the mooring lines securing the mobile offshore drilling unit, DEEPWATER NAUTILUS, and caused the operator, Shell Offshore Inc., to cease drilling operations for twelve days. Shell alleged that it was owed millions of dollars for the downtime and sued International and Tesla.

Notwithstanding unfavorable pre-trial rulings, Frilot attorneys successfully convinced the jury that International was liable for only 25% of Shell’s damages.