1998 Honorable Mention Defense Victories

The National Law Journal

DEFENSE ATTORNEYS: Philip S. Beck, Peter B. Bensinger, Jr. and Andre M. Pauka of Chicago's Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP.

Smaller wins that deserve an honorable mention: fraud

The National Law Journal (p. A21)
Monday, April 19, 1999

Case type: fraud

Case: SK Handtool Corp. v. Dresser Industries Inc., 96 L 14246 (Cir. Ct., Cook Co., Ill.)

The plaintiffs, SK Handtool Corp. and Corcoran Partners Ltd., had sued Dresser Industries Inc. for fraud and, in 1994, won a $54 million verdict, including $50 million in punitives.  The trial court cut the punitives to $8 million. In 1996, the $4 million compensatory award was remanded for retrial, but the punitives were reinstated pending retrial.

The plaintiffs were seeking $40 million in the retrial, but on Oct. 30, 1998, a Chicago jury awarded $1 in compensatory damages.  On Jan. 22, Illinois Circuit Court Judge Kenneth L. Gillis reduced the punitive award to $650,000.

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