Lawsuit against Case, Grove Farm dismissed

A federal court in Honolulu this week struck down claims against Steve Case relating to his acquisition of Grove Farm Company, a Kaua‘i plantation, in December 2000.

U.S. District Court Judge Robert E. Jones found Wednesday that Case had not engaged in any federal security improprieties.

A group of former Grove Farm shareholders had argued that Case and his companies obtained confidential inside information to purchase all of Grove Farm’s shares. The plaintiffs filed suit in 2005 and were seeking more than $2.5 billion in damages against Case. Judge Jones found that plaintiffs had failed to prove their claims, dismissing all plaintiffs’ claims in his decision.

“After two years of litigation Judge Jones found no fault on the part of Mr. Case. We are especially pleased that after fifty witnesses testified at the month-long trial the court recognized that Mr. Case did nothing improper in purchasing all of Grove Farm’s stock,” said attorney Paul Alston, who represented Case in the lawsuit. “Under Mr. Case’s direction, Grove Farm continues to be a good steward and responsible citizen on the island of Kauai.”

David Nakashima, a second attorney representing Case in the matter, said that another lawsuit brought by former shareholders had been dismissed in recent years. A third lawsuit went to trial, but a jury decided against the plaintiffs.

Two other lawsuits being brought against Case were consolidated in 5th Circuit Court on Wednesdsay. Nakashima said that the case was scheduled to be heard by Judge Kathleen Watanabe in June 2010.

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