Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Lawyers for Fishermen, Leaky Dubai Star Tanker Talk -- But Disagree On What They Talked About

Posted By on Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 5:30 AM

click to enlarge The opposing attorneys' stories seem to go together like oil and water...
  • The opposing attorneys' stories seem to go together like oil and water...
Lawyers representing aggrieved San Francisco fishermen and the oil-spewing Dubai Star tanker spoke this week. They can agree on that. But not on much else, it would seem.


After reviewing the $10 million class-action suit filed in San Francisco court on Friday, the lawyer for the Dubai Star ship and the corporations that own and operate it gave the legalistic version of "meh."

"The owners have reviewed the lawsuit and believe that it is without merit," said city attorney Greg Poulos. "Surveys by the [Coast Guard], state and local agencies and by the spill response organizations have confirmed the spill was contained south of the Oakland Bay bridge. No commercial fishery has been closed as a result of the spill, and the owners do not expect any impact on the commercial crab fishery when it opens later this month. After explaining its position to the plaintiffs' attorney we can confirm he did not disagree and has offered to stay the lawsuit for up to ninety days to allow time to determine if his clients have sustained any damages."

Meanwhile, plaintiffs' attorney Anthony Urie of Seattle didn't recall things that way. Not at all.

Urie says he did offer to hold off on the suit, but only because "we want to work with the vessel owners' insurance to set up a claims process like the one we had in the Cosco Busan case. I believe that is the appropriate protocol under the Oil Pollution Act."

Continued Urie, "I disagree with much of his recollection of our discussion. He's being a good defense attorney. That's all I can say."

Urie represented a number of fishermen in suits over the Cosco Busan oil spill -- truly a case that involved more lawyers than Saturday Night Live has writers. He told SF Weekly that, without details involving just who was liable for a ship colliding with the Bay Bridge, he felt the Dubai Star case ought to be easier to resolve than the Cosco Busan matter.

"I think it's more straightforward," he said.

Somehow, we have a feeling Poulos disagrees.

  • Pin It

Tags: , , , , ,

About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Bio:
Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook

Slideshows

  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"