A lawsuit was filed in Miami-Dade County Circuit Court on behalf of Plaintiff Ferguson Enterprises, Inc. against Grupo Unidos Por El Canal, S.A., a consortium of leading construction companies.
The group includes Spain’s Sacyr Vallehermoso, Italy’s Impregilo, Belgium’s Jan de Nul and Panama’s Constructora Urbana (Cusa). GUPC is based in Panama City, Panama.
The consortium is best known as the main contractor responsible for the design and construction of the Panama Canal’s third set of locks. The construction of the new locks is the largest contract under the Panama Canal’s US$5.25bn expansion program.
In the lawsuit, Ferguson alleges that GUPC failed to fulfill its obligations under a supplies contract in Miami, Florida. According to the Complaint, GUPC was obligated to pay $163,335.22. It is alleged that GUPC refused to pay amounts due and owing under the contract.
As a result of GUPC’s failure to pay, the suit alleges that Ferguson incurred damages. The lawsuit, brought by the prestigious Barthet law firm and international attorney Santiago Cueto of Cueto Law Group, was filed as a last resort following GUPC’s failure to honor the contract. “It is unfortunate that GUPC has completely refused to honor its obligations. The geographic divide between Miami and Panama does not mean that a foreign company can simply disregard its contractual responsibilities. We intend to pursue GUPC for all damages and costs incurred by our client,” said attorneys Alexander E. Barthet and Santiago Cueto.
“Our client delivered valuable supplies to GUPC. The Defendant’s conduct in failing to meet its end of the bargain will not be tolerated. We intend to pursue all legal remedies available under U.S. and international law. GUPC can run but it can’t hide,” added attorney Santiago Cueto.
Dredging Today Staff, November 15, 2012; Image: gupc