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Mr. Smyser tries cases. Since founding Smyser, Kaplan & Veselka, LLP in 1995, Mr. Smyser has successfully represented multi-national oil companies, one of the Nation's largest railroad companies, Texas' largest non-profit hospital system, class action plaintiffs and defendants, the City of Houston, the Houston Sports Authority, one of Mexico's largest resort companies, and prominent and not-so-prominent individuals in battles in federal and state courts around the country. In 2017, after persuading a bankruptcy court to enter an injunction freezing $117 million in funds held by a New York hedge fund, he obtained partial settlements and agreed judgments on behalf of the Black Elk Litigation Trustee in excess of $50 million. In 2016, he successfully represented three companies – the first, the world's largest oil field services company; the second, a start-up international oil exploration and development company; and the third, an NYSE-traded health care company – in theft of trade secrets and violation of non-compete disputes. In 2015, he successfully represented one of the largest U.S. railroad companies in a federal court challenge by the petrochemical trade association to the railroad's rate for transporting crude oil in certain older tank cars and obtained dismissal of a class-action suit filed against one of the Southwest's largest non-profit healthcare providers. In 2014, Mr. Smyser obtained a complete victory for SKV's client – one of the world's largest liquefied natural gas businesses – in an ICDR arbitration involving a contract dispute with one of the world's largest integrated oil companies. The Panel award resolved every disputed issue in his client's favor and awarded it all costs, including attorney's fees. He successfully defended Enron's Chief Financial Officer in more than 100 civil security fraud lawsuits nationwide.
As trial lawyer for plaintiffs, Mr. Smyser represented David's Supermarkets in a civil fraud trial that resulted in a judgment for more than $200 million against a Fortune 50 company, causing the New York Stock Exchange to suspend trading of the company's stock after the verdict. In 2013, he obtained a multi-million jury verdict – every penny demanded – on behalf of a derivative plaintiff in a breach of fiduciary duty and fraud claim against the CEO and his services company while at the same persuading the jury to reject every counterclaim.
Mr. Smyser represents Yukos International UK B.V. and a number of individual officers of the former Yukos Oil in on-going disputes over the expropriation and dismemberment of Yukos Oil by the Russian government. A federal court judge in Los Angeles granted summary judgment in a class action case for Mr. Smyser's Mexican client in a case alleging fraud in the sale of time shares in Mexico. In the Southern District of New York, Mr. Smyser represented the Chairman of the Board of Directors of a Canadian company in a class action securities fraud case. In international arbitration in London, Mr. Smyser successfully represented an oil field equipment manufacturer in a dispute with an Indian company over construction of a plant in Hyderbad, India.
In addition to his extensive trial court experience, Mr. Smyser has briefed and argued cases at every level of appellate court in the state and federal system, including the Texas Supreme Court and the United States Supreme Court.
Last Updated 10th September 2017