companies sue Yahoo, law firm, allege conspiracy to avoid $2.7
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[September 12, 2014] By
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Two
Mexican companies have sued Yahoo Inc and law firm Baker
& McKenzie in New York federal court, accusing them of
engineering a conspiracy to avoid a $2.7 billion
judgment issued by a Mexican court in 2012.
In a lawsuit filed on Thursday, Worldwide Directories S.A. de C.V.
and Ideas Interactivas S.A. de C.V. said Yahoo and Baker & McKenzie
enlisted the help of a senior Mexican judge and other court
personnel to "corrupt the appeals process and overturn the
"This is a frivolous attempt to revive interest in a meritless
lawsuit, and we will vigorously defend against these baseless
claims," said a Yahoo spokeswoman.
A Baker & McKenzie spokesman did not respond to requests for
The case stems from a contractual dispute over deals between Yahoo
and the companies over an online search project in Mexico. The
companies filed a lawsuit in 2011 in Mexico, claiming Yahoo had
breached its duties by terminating the agreements prematurely.
A Mexican judge issued a $2.7 billion preliminary judgment in
December 2012. The size of the damages came as a surprise to
investors and other observers of the tech industry.
According to Thursday’s lawsuit, Yahoo and its lawyers at Baker &
McKenzie successfully reduced the award to $172,500 by instructing a
corrupt Mexican federal judge to meet in secret with the appellate
chief judge and “intimidate” her into slashing the damages.
The appeals court also granted Yahoo a $3 million judgment on its
counterclaims against the companies as a result of the coercion, the
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The evidence of the conspiracy, the lawsuit claimed, consists of
sworn statements from witnesses who directly observed the
misconduct, including the original trial judge who issued the
David Stone, a lawyer for the companies based in New Jersey, said
the lawsuit was intended to prevent two major U.S. corporations from
"interfering with the Mexican judicial process."
(Reporting by Joseph Ax; Editing by Noeleen Walder and Cynthia
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