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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Did Gundlach Win?

News summary by MFWire's editors

Fundsters who are still wondering what to make of the Friday verdict in Trust Company of the West (TCW [see profile]) v Gundlach may want to take a look at Reuters' latest analysis. Alison Frankel talked to attorneys for both TCW and DoubleLine [see profile], and she offers a different perspective on where the case stands.

To read the rest of the story of the fight between Gundlach and TCW, click here.

On the one side, Mark Helm of Munger Tolles & Olson (Gundlach's law firm) told Reuters that, because the jury decided both the fiduciary breach and 'tortuous interference' didn't harm TCW, the defense will ask the judge to enter judgment for the defense on both counts. And they're going to ask TCW to throw in attorneys fees on top of the $66.7 million in backpay the jury already asked TCW to pay Gundlach and his colleagues.

"Judgment will be entered on our client's behalf. We prevailed," Helm told Reuters. "If there's no harm there's no liability."

On the other side, John Quinn of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver & Sullivan (TCW's law firm) admitted to having "mixed feelings" regarding the "bizarre result" of the case. Yet he insisted that, thanks to the 'faithless fiduciary doctrine,' the plaintiffs will ask the judge to set aside the $66.7 million award because of the fiduciary breach. (Helm called the faithless fiduciary argument meritless.)

"We think the wage award is vulnerable," Quinn told the wire service. "I don't think he's ever going to see any of that money."

Quinn also noted that the judge still has to rule on damages on the trade secrets theft, for which TCW is asking $89 million, and that TCW's unfair competition claim is still pending before the judge. 

Edited by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

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