Yahoo announced some relatively good news today. It’s not on the hook to pay a staggering $2.75 billion fine to Mexican entrepreneur Carlos Bazan-Canabal after all.
An appellate court in Mexico reduced the fine to a much more manageable $172,500, to be paid by Yahoo! Mexico.
In November, a former business partner, Worldwide Directories, won a breach-of-contract lawsuit against Yahoo for breaking off a telephone-directories project that had started in Mexico but was set to expand internationally. A Mexican district court awarded it $2.75 billion in damages, based largely on the prospects of overseas expansion.
One of the oddest details about the lawsuit was that the $2.7 billion judgment was issued by a law clerk, on behalf of a judge who had stepped down from his position before the judgement was entered, Yahoo said.
This may not be the end. Bazan-Canabal could appeal.
Here’s the press release:
Yahoo! Granted favourable Ruling in Mexico City Superior Court of Justice
SUNNYVALE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO) today announced that the Superior Court of Justice for the Federal District in Mexico has granted the company’s appeal and reversed the ruling of the 49th Civil Court of Mexico, which had entered a non-final judgment of $2.75 billion against Yahoo! and Yahoo! Mexico on November 28, 2012.
The appellate decision overturned all monetary awards against Yahoo! Inc. and reduced the monetary award against Yahoo! Mexico to $172,500. Yahoo! Mexico was awarded $2.6 million in the original judgment, and this award was confirmed by the appellate decision. The plaintiffs may appeal this decision.
The appellate decision pertains to the lawsuit filed by World Wide Directories, S.A. de C.V. and Ideas Interactivas, S.A. de C.V. against Yahoo! Mexico and Yahoo Inc. in 2011. On December 12, 2012, and December 13, 2012, respectively, Yahoo! Mexico and Yahoo! Inc. appealed the judgment to a three-magistrate panel of the Superior Court of Justice for the Federal District.
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