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INDEMNITY INSURANCE COMPANY OF NORTH AMERICA v. M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE et al

ATTENTION: It is possible that this information may no longer be current and therefore may be inaccurate. The index contains both open and closed cases and is not a complete list of cases in which an ACE Insurance Group company is involved. This information is provided to give interested persons an idea of the issues disputed in the indexed cases. For a full understanding of a case, one should read the rest of the court file, including the response. For the most up-to-date and complete information on a case, visit www.pacer.gov or contact the clerk of the relevant court.

Case Number: 
1:14-cv-07451 Search Pacer
Court Type: 
Federal
US District Court: 
Southern District of New York
Date Filed: 
Sep 15 2014

JURISDICTION
1. This is an admiralty and maritime claim within the meaning of Rule 9(h) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Jurisdiction is predicated upon 28 U.S.C. §1333.

PARTIES
2. At all material times, rNDEMNlTY INSURANCE COMPANY OF NORTH
AMERICA (hereinafter "IINA" or "Plaintiff') was and is a corporation with an office and place
of business located at 1133 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York 10036, and is the
subrogated underwriter of two consignments of Agricultural Balers laden on board the M/V
COSCO NAGOYA, as more specifically described below.
3. At all material times, OLD NAVY LLC, (hereinafter "Old Navy" or "Plaintiff')
was and is a corporation organized and existing by virtue of the laws of a foreign state with an
office and place of business located at 2 Folsom Street, San Francisco, CA 94105 and was the
owner/consignee of a consignment of Apparel laden on board the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE,
as more specifically described below.
4. At all material times, THE GAP, INC., (hereinafter "The Gap" or "Plaintiff') was
and is a corporation organized and existing by virtue of the laws of a foreign state with an office
and place of business located at 2 Folsom Street, San Francisco, CA 94105 and was the
owner/consignee of a consignment of Apparel laden on board the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE,
as more specifically described below.
5. At all material times, BANANA REPUBLIC LLC, (hereinafter "Banana
Republic" or "Plaintiff') was and is a corporation organized and existing by virtue of the laws of
a foreign state with an office and place of business located at 2 Folsom Street, San Francisco, CA
94105 and was the owner/consignee of a consignment of Apparel laden on board the M/V SUEZ
CANAL BRIDGE, as more specifically described below.
6. At all material times, E S SUTTON, INC., (hereinafter "Sutton" or "Plaintiff")
was and is a corporation organized and existing by virtue of the laws of a foreign state with an
office and place of business located at 115 Kennedy Drive, Sayreville, New Jersey 08872 and
was the owner/consignee of a consignment of Apparel laden on board the M/V SUEZ CANAL
BRIDGE, as more specifically described below.
7. At all material times, defendant M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE (hereinafter "the
vessel") is an ocean going container ship owned and operated by defendants, as more specifically
described below, that carried containerized cargo which is the subject matter of this lawsuit, from
Germany to the United States.
8. At all material times, defendant VIRGO CARRIERS CORP S.A. (hereinafter
"Virgo") was and is a corporation with an office and place of business located c/o Sea Quest Ship
Management Inc., Room 3B, St. Jude Bldg., 1020 General Malver Street, Makate, Manila,
Philippines, was and is the owner and/or operator and/or manager of the M/V SUEZ CANAL
BRIDGE and at all relevant times, was and is still doing business within the jurisdiction of this
Honorable Court.
9. At all material times, defendant SEA QUEST SHIP MANAGEMENT INC.
(hereinafter "Sea Quest") was and is a corporation with an office and place of business located at
Room 3B, St. Jude Bldg.j 1020 General Malver Street, Makate, Manila, Philippines, was and is
the owner and/or operator and/or manager of the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE and at all
relevant times, was and is still doing business within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court.
10. At all material times, defendant, YANG MING LINE (HK) LTD. (hereinafter
"Yang Ming") was and is a corporation organized and existing by virtue of the laws of a foreign
state with an office and place of business located at Newport Office Tower, 525 Washington
Blvd. 25th Floor, Jersey City, NJ 07310, and at all relevant times, was and is still doing business
within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court as a common carrier of goods for hire.
11. At all material times, defendant, HANJIN SHIPPING CO., LTD. (hereinafter
"Hanjin") was and is a corporation organized and existing by virtue of the laws of a foreign state
with an office and place of business located at 4300 North Point Parkway, Ste 103, Alpharetta,
GA 30022 and at all relevant times, was and is still doing business within the jurisdiction of this
Honorable Court as a common carrier of goods for hire.
12. Plaintiff brings this action on its own behalf and as agent and/or trustee on behalf
of and for the interest of all parties who may be or become interested in the said consignments,
as their respective interests may ultimately appear, and plaintiff Is entitled to maintain this action.

AS AND FOR A FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION AGAINST ALL DEFENDANTS
13. Plaintiff repeats, reiterates and realleges each and every allegation set forth in
paragraphs 1 through 12, inclusive, as if herein set forth at length.
14. In December 2013, a consignment consisting of 1,021 cartons Apparel, consigned
to Old Navy LLC and laden in container number DFSU 6762943, then being in good order and
condition, was delivered to the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE and to Yang Ming and/or their
agents in Yantian, China in consideration of an agreed upon freight, pursuant to Yang Ming bills
of lading numbers YMLUE300362657, YMLUE300362658, YMLUE300362659,
YMLU300362660, YMLU300362661, YMLUE300362662 each dated December 29, 2013, for
transportation to Fishkill, New York via New York, New York.
15. In December 2013, a consignment consisting of 498 cartons Apparel consigned to
Old Navy LLC; 612 cartons Apparel consigned to The Gap; and 43 cartons Apparel consigned to
Banana Republic, all laden in container number CAIU 8743154, then being in good order and
condition, was delivered to the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE and to Hanjin and/or their agents
in Hochirninh City, Vietnam in consideration of an agreed upon freight, pursuant to Hanjin bills
of lading numbers HJSCSGN336915400, HJSCSGN336915401, HJSCSGN336915402,
HJSCSGN336915403, HJSCSGN336915404 and HJSCSGN336915405 each dated December
30,2013, for transportation to Fishkill, New York via New York, New York.
16. In December 2013, a consignment consisting of 2,340 cartons Apparel consigned
to Sutton; laden in container number DRYU 9657112, then being in good order and condition,
was delivered to the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE and to Hanjin and/or their agents in
Chittagong, Bangladesh in consideration of an agreed upon freight, pursuant to Hanjin bill of
lading number HJSCDAC310077300 dated December 27,2013, for transportation to New York,
New York. Thereafter, the aforementioned consignment was loaded aboard the M/V SUEZ
CANAL BRIDGE and the vessel sailed for its intended destination.
17. On or about January 23, 2014, while the vessel was enroute to the United States
and in the Atlantic Ocean, the vessel encountered severe weather conditions, which resulted in
the loss of a number of containers overboard, including the aforementioned container laden with
plaintiffs cargo.
18. As a result of the foregoing, Old Navy suffered a loss of its cargo valued at
$493,740.62 that was laden in container DFSU 6762943.
19. As a result of the foregoing, Old Navy, The Gap and Banana Republic suffered a
loss of its cargo valued at $1,208,106.10 that was laden in container CAIU 8743154.
20. As a result of the foregoing, Sutton suffered a loss of its cargo valued at
$118,881.36 that was laden in container DRYU 9657112.
21. The loss sustained by Plaintiff was not the result of any act or omission of the
Plaintiff but, to the contrary, was due solely as the result of the negligence, fault, neglect, breach
of contract of carriage, and bailment on the part of the Defendants and/or its agents and/or the
unseaworthiness of the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE.
22. At all times relevant hereto, a contract of insurance for property damage was in
effect between Old Navy, The Gap Banana Republic and Sutton with IINA, which provided
coverage for, among other things, loss or damage to the subject consignment.
23. Pursuant to the aforementioned contract of insurance between Old Navy, The
Gap, Banana Republic, Sutton and IINA, monies have been expended on behalf of Old Navy,
The Gap, Banana Republic and Sutton to the detriment of IINA due to the damages sustained
during this transit
24. As IINA has sustained damages as a result of said expenditures, expenditures
rightly the responsibility of defendants, IINA has an equitable right of subrogation and is
subrogated, to the extent of the expenditures, to the rights of its insured with respect to any and
all claims for damages against the defendant.
25. By reason of the foregoing, plaintiff has sustained losses which will be shown
with specificity at trial, no part of which has been paid, although duly demanded, which are
presently estimated to be no less than (a) $493,740.62 for the cargo laden in container DFSU
6762943; $1,208,106.10 that was laden in container CAIU 8743154; and $118,881.36 that was
laden in container DRYU 9657112 for a total loss of $1,820,728.08.

AS AND FOR A SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION
26. Plaintiff repeats, reiterates and realleges each and every allegation contained in
paragraphs 1 through 18, inclusive, as if herein set forth at length.
27. At the time of the aforementioned non-delivery to the shipment occurred,
defendants together with the entities they hired to act on their behalf, wee acting as bailees of the
shipment and in their own capacity, or through their contractors, agents, servants, or sub-bailees,
had a duty to safely and properly keep, care for and deliver the shipment in the same good order
and condition as when entrusted to them. Defendants also had a duty to ensure that the services
provided for the shipment were performed with reasonable care and in a non-negligent and
workmanlike manner.
28. Defendants breached their duties and obligations as bailees by failing to deliver
said shipment.
29. By reason of the foregoing, plaintiff has sustained losses which will be shown
with specificity at trial, no part of which has been paid, although duly demanded, which are
presently estimated to be no less than $1,820,728.08.

AS AND FOR A THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION
30. Plaintiff repeats, reiterates and realleges each and every allegation contained in
paragraphs 1 through 26, inclusive, as if herein set forth at length.
31. As the owners, operators, charterers and /or managers of the M/V SUEZ CANAL
BRIDGE, defendants were responsible for properly manning, maintaining and repairing the
vessel and for otherwise exercising due diligence to ensure that the vessel was seaworthy and fit
to carry cargoes that were delivered to and loaded on board the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE
during winter North Atlantic voyages.
32. The losses sustained by plaintiff were caused, in whole or in part, by the
negligence and fault of defendants, and /or their agents, representatives and independent
contractors for whose acts and omissions it was responsible, including but not limited to, their
failure to maintain the M/V SUEZ CANAL BRIDGE in a seaworthy condition.
33. By reason of the foregoing, plaintiff has sustained losses which will be shown
with specificity at trial, no part of which has been paid, although duly demanded, which are
presently estimated to be no less than $1,820,728.08.

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays:
1. That process in due form of law may issue against Defendants citing them to
appear and answer all and singular the matters aforesaid;
2. That judgment may be entered in favor of Plaintiff against Defendants for the
amount of Plaintiffs damages in the amount of at least $1,820,728.08, together with interests,
costs and the disbursements of this action; and
3. That this Court grant to Plaintiff such other and further relief as may be just and
proper.

The provided text is an excerpt from a document filed in this case. For a full understanding of the case, one should read the complete court file, including the response.