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Jul 19, 2018

Cardenas’ Cotton Case Against Chad Settled

Supreme Court Justice Courtenay Abel did not have to make a ruling in a civil suit brought against businessman Chad Eckert. That’s because the parties managed to put their differences aside and agree on common grounds. The U.S. investor, who eventually surfaced as the owner of Apex, was being sued by former business partner Gustavo Cardenas, proprietor of Belize Sea Island Cotton. The lawsuit surrounded twelve thousand pounds of West Indian Sea Island Cotton at a farm in the Orange Walk District. The men entered into a business agreement in September 2016 but their business relationship soon began to deteriorate. The agreement was that Eckert would provide financing for the planting and cultivation of fifty acres of cotton trees in San Lorenzo Village. Things, however, went south and Cardenas and Eckert began feuding over seed cotton which evolved into a legal case before the courts.  During the hearing this afternoon, Justice Abel was able to challenge both parties to come to an amicable resolution. Both parties agreed that the seed cotton would be sold and the profits shared evenly. Attorney Darrell Bradley represented Eckert.


Darrell Bradley

Darrell Bradley, Attorney for Chad Eckert

“I think that the judge rightly challenged us at a certain point to see if the matter could have been resolved. The attorneys together with their clients sat down for the better part of the afternoon in terms of working out a series of different proposals. At the end of the day both the claimant and the defendant were able to enter into a consent order to say how this matter will be resolve. Again, this morning I gave by way of a comment, Belize is a democratic society. We have a judicial process. We are a free market society. People enter into contract. People are sued. People go to court. In this particular case my client Sea Island Cotton Limited defended the matter and I believe we were able to prevail in terms of the consent order on certain of our issues. I think that the order that was entered benefits both of the parties. It will be something that both of the parties will have to cooperate equally to resolve the matter in court. The seeds and the cotton will be put up for sale and the proceeds of the sale will be split. The claimant had claims for damages, matters in terms of the value of the seed so they were suing for something close to four hundred and fifty thousand dollars. At the end of the day we entered an order that say that the produce, seeds and cotton would go up for sale.  Both parties would work together to have that done as quickly as possible and then whatever proceeds are generated would be split equally between the parties.”

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