New York minimally invasive devices maker AngioDynamics (NSDQ:ANGO) is revisiting a motion to sanction rival medical laser maker Biolitec (ETR:BIB), accusing the competitor of failing to comply with court orders in a lawsuit stemming back to 2009.
AngioDynamics claimed that Biolitec has refused to produce several key witnesses for deposition, despite court rulings requiring their appearance. Missing witnesses include defendant and Biolitec CEO Wolfgang Neuberger and 3 others, according to AngioDynamics’ complaint.
Filed in a U.S. District Court for the State of Massachusetts, the lawsuit accuses Biolitec and its CEO "for tortiously interfering with Biolitec Inc.’s contractual obligations, to pierce Biolitec Inc.’s corporate veil, and to invalidate certain alleged fraudulent transfers between Biolitec Inc. and related corporate entities." District Judge Michael Ponsor last year granted AngioDynamics a preliminary injunction against Biolitec, barring it from carrying out a "downstream merger" with an Austrian subsidiary that would have removed it from the court’s jurisdiction.
Neuberger was ordered arrested earlier this year when Judge Ponsor ruled that Biolitec had failed to comply with court mandates, Bloomberg reported. Biolitec had promised at the time to appeal the order.
Now AngioDynamics claims that Biolitec has also failed to produce 3 additional "critical witnesses," naming Brian Foley and Art Henneberger, described as 2 of Biolitec’s "key accounting staff and managers throughout the world," as well as Bolesh Skutnik, long-time general counsel. All 3 are also on the board of directors for all of Biolitec’s U.S.-based entities, according to legal documents.
"At the end of August 2013, defendants abruptly refused to produce Foley, Henneberger, and Skutnik for the continued depositions, and the 3 witnesses have not appeared," according to AngioDynamics’ complaint. "Based on defendants’ current actions as well as their refusal to produce Neuberger and refusal to produce documents ordered by this Court … the only appropriate sanction is the entry of default judgment against BAG, Biomed, and Neuberger."
AngioDynamics in October 2012 won a $16.5 million award in a separate lawsuit when a judge ruled that Biolitec, which provided laser vein ablation technology to AngioDynamics, failed to defend and indemnify the medical device company in lawsuits filed against it by Biomed and Covidien (NYSE:COV) subsidiary VNUS Medical Technologies. The judge further ruled to deny Biolitec’s request for an interlocutory appeal and ordered his memorandum sealed for 1 year.