Anderson v Speyer

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court (New York)
Docket NumberCase No. 51
Date05 June 1952
United States, Supreme Court, Special Term, New York County.
Case No. 51

Jurisdiction — Exemption from — Foreign States — Sovereign Immunity — Private Party Demanding Funds in Hands of Other Private Parties in Redress for Acts of a Foreign Government — Indirectly Impleading a Foreign Government — Set-Off.

The Facts.—Anderson and others, individually and as members of the International Committee of Bankers of Mexico (1922), brought a voluntary accounting action against Speyer and others, seeking approval of their activities and accounts and for certain appropriate incidental relief in order to accomplish a final plan of distribution of all of the funds in the hands of the Committee. Before the Court was a motion to dismiss counterclaims by certain of the defendants, which latter, in effect, sought redress for an alleged wrong done to them by the Mexican Government in terminating the right of bondholders to assent to refinancing agreements. The details of the latter allegation are set forth in the Held below.

Held: that the motion to dismiss the counterclaims must be granted. The Court said:

“The gist of the alleged second counterclaim is the claim of the non-assenting bondholders that the decree of the Mexican government terminating the period during which bondholders were permitted to assent to the Mexican government Refinancing Plans deprived these defendants and other non-assenting bondholders of certain rights accorded to the assenting bondholders under the Plans. The counterclaiming defendants accordingly demand that this court, in the present action, direct that the funds remaining in the hands of the committee be distributed first to the non-assenting bondholders in order to equalize the payments made by the Mexican government to the assenting bondholders under the 1942 and 1946 agreements.

“It thus appears clearly that what is sought by these counterclaims is an adjudication that the Refinancing Agreements, and in particular the Mexican decree terminating the right to assent, are confiscatory and of no legal effect so far as the non-assenting bondholders are concerned.

“The counterclaims do not allege that any act of the assenting bondholders is the basis of the claim now put forth by the non-assenting bondholders. The funds in the hands of the plaintiffs have already been adjudicated as belonging to the bondholders, Lamont v. Travelers Ins. Co.UNKUNKENR, Sup., 66 N.Y.S. 2d 307, affirmed 272 App.Div. 337, 71 N.Y.S. 2d 219...

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