Judge Mark Davis

Jun 26, 2014

Court Grants Lien for Unpaid Fuel Bill

Applying Greek law, the Norfolk U.S. District Court grants summary judgment to plaintiff, who is seeking a maritime lien for unpaid fuel services. Tramp Maritime Enterprises Ltd., located in Greece, chartered the M/V Hebei Shijiazhuang, registered in Hong Kong, from claimant, located in China, for three consecutive time charters between May 23, 2012 and Nov. […]

Jun 20, 2014

Pro Se Party Has Computer Fraud Claim

In plaintiff’s suit alleging a former employee illegally used plaintiff’s trademark through a website and converted plaintiff’s software product in breach of their employment contract, the Norfolk U.S. District Court says the pro se defendant has stated a counterclaim for violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, but dismisses defendant’s counterclaims for civil conspiracy, […]

May 13, 2014

Punitives Claim Dismissed in Contract Case

In this suit alleging defendant breached a contract governing defendant’s removal of “equipment and assets” from a building owned by plaintiffs, plaintiffs have violated the Newport News U.S. District Court’s Local Rules and offered only conclusory asserts to support its claim for $900,000 in punitive damages, and the court dismisses this claim. Initially, the court […]

May 13, 2014

No ‘Reservation of Rights’ in Answer to SEC

A Norfolk U.S. District Court grants the government’s motion to strike a “Reservation of Rights” clause in an answer filed by a defendant to this action by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, in which defendant purports to reserve the right to “amend, supplement and/or modify her answer.” Rule 12(f) states that a district court […]

Apr 23, 2014

Claim Constructions Issued in Water-Toy Patent Case

In this litigation over a patent for a “self-propelled figure” used to give water toys a life-like motion, the Norfolk U.S. District Court issues its claim constructions after the court’s Markman hearing. The court construes the disputed terms as follows: “flexible appendage” is given its plain and ordinary meaning, with no construction required; “coupled to […]

Apr 16, 2014

Company Fired for Hiring Competitor’s Employees

A company that sells medical equipment may sue a competitor that hired two of plaintiff’s former employees for tortious interference with contract and statutory business conspiracy; the Supreme Court of Virginia’s recent opinion in Dunlap v. Cottman Transmission Systems LLC reinforces the analysis of the magistrate judge, which the Norfolk U.S. District Court adopts to […]

Mar 21, 2014

Bond Not Posted, No Permits, Contract Cancelled

In this suit for breach of a contract to buy commercial real estate for construction of a restaurant, the Norfolk U.S. District Court denies each side’s motion for summary judgment as there remain many material factual disputes over each side’s efforts to facilitate the necessary permits to begin the project. Defendant terminated the contract on […]

Mar 18, 2014

Directors Face ‘Control Person’ Liability Claim

Investors in a bank that collapsed have sufficiently pleaded “control person” liability claims against defendant bank executives and director defendants, based on allegations of conduct such as defendants signing at least two financial statements that were purportedly fraudulent; the Norfolk U.S. District Court accepts the magistrate judge’s recommendation to deny dismissal of these claims. [...]

Feb 25, 2014

Prof Who Claims Bias Can Amend Suit

A Norfolk U.S. District Court dismisses this race, age and gender bias suit filed by a 66-year-old male African-American associate professor of mathematics against Norfolk State University, with leave to amend. Plaintiff’s age bias claim is dismissed without prejudice. The 11th Amendment bars the court from considering his claims under the Age Discrimination in Employment […]

Feb 25, 2014

Court Won’t Extend ‘Turnover’ Duty

The Norfolk U.S. District Court dismisses a longshoreman’s claim arising from injuries he allegedly received when attempting to board a barge owned by Columbia Leasing LLC and bareboat chartered to Columbia Coastal, who hired the stevedore Ceres Marine Terminals Inc. to handle container loading and unloading from the barge; the court says plaintiffs are entitled […]

Feb 19, 2014

Talks with Wife & Pastors Not Confidential

A Norfolk U.S. District Court denies defendant’s motion in limine to exclude evidence of his confidential communications with his wife and his pastors during defendant’s incarceration, as all parties had notice defendant’s calls from the jail could be monitored and recorded. The government asserts defendant voluntarily utilized jail communications services to talk to his wife, […]

Jan 30, 2014

Claim for Specific Performance Survives

In this litigation arising from defendant’s contract to buy 1.2 acres of unimproved commercial real estate on which to construct a restaurant, the Norfolk U.S. District Court denies defendant’s motion to dismiss plaintiff’s claim for specific performance; irrespective of whether the court interprets Rule 9(c) as providing a pleading standard lesser than the Rule 8(a) […]

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