AZA Obtains Judgment for Apache Corp. in Fraud Suit
January 25, 2018

SAN ANTONIO – Houston lawyer Neal Sarkar, of AZA, or Ahmad, Zavitsanos & Mensing, obtained a substantial judgment with punitive damages for Apache Corp. in a fraud suit against an oilfield services vendor.

Apache filed suit in 2014, alleging vendor James Mann submitted fraudulent bills for work in the Permian Basin. The lawsuit further alleged that Mr. Mann manipulated an Apache employee in his efforts to steal from the exploration and production company.

The judge agreed not only to a penalty for fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud, but also to exemplary damages and post-judgment interest.

“Apache pushed this case aggressively knowing Mann had exhibited a pattern of defrauding oil and gas companies. Apache is by no means the only victim, and the company was willing to commit to see the case through. We were thrilled that the judge agreed with our arguments, including for the punitive damages,” said Mr. Sarkar, an associate at AZA. He worked on the case with partners Tim Shelby and John Zavitsanos.

The case in Bexar County’s 407th District Court is Apache Corporation v. James Mann 2014-CI-06896 and this was a default judgment.

AZA, or Ahmad, Zavitsanos & Mensing, is a Houston-based law firm that is home to true courtroom lawyers with a formidable track record in complex commercial litigation, including energy, intellectual property, and business dispute cases. AZA is recognized by Chambers USA 2017 among the best in Texas commercial law; by U.S. News – Best Lawyers’ Best Law Firms as one of the country’s best commercial litigation firms for 2018; and previously by Law360 as a Texas Powerhouse law firm. National corporate counsel named AZA one of the country’s best in client service among law firms serving the Fortune 1000.

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