Houston Complex Commercial Litigation Firm AZA Successfully Defends Trade Secret Lawsuit, Wins $750,000 in Legal Fees October 19, 2011
HOUSTON – The Houston complex commercial litigation law firm of AZA, or Ahmad, Zavitsanos & Mensing, is announcing a Houston jury verdict in favor of Mistras Group Inc. (NYSE: MG) following a trade secret case that included an award of substantial attorneys’ fees for the firm.
AZA lawyers John Zavitsanos and Elizabeth Pannill Fletcher won the successful defense verdict last week for Mistras, a New Jersey-based company that assesses the safety of large corporate and infrastructure components such as refineries and bridges. During the trial that lasted more than three weeks, Mistras was wrongly accused by Texas-based Sentinel Integrity Solutions of interfering with an employment agreement and obtaining confidential information when it hired a former Sentinel employee. Sentinel sued for more than $9 million.
The jury in Judge Caroline Baker’s 295th Harris County District Court found that Mistras and its employees did nothing wrong and awarded $750,000 in legal fees to Mistras’ lawyers at AZA.
“It’s highly unusual for a jury to award this much money to the attorneys of a defendant and we’re very grateful for the panel’s careful attention and consideration,” says Mr. Zavitsanos, a founding member of AZA.
The jury verdict includes an additional $150,000 in attorneys’ fees if Sentinel files an appeal, creating a possible total fee award of $900,000. The case is Sentinel Integrity Solutions Inc. v. Mistras Group Inc., et al., No. 2010-11229.
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, securities fraud, construction, and business dispute cases. AZA is one of only 32 firms in the U.S. to be recognized as “awesome opponents” in a nationwide poll of corporate general counsel who were asked to name the law firms they hope their companies never have to face in court. In fact, AZA has been hired on many occasions by the same companies the firm has prevailed against at trial.