Businessman awarded £1/4 million in complex coffee case

Law firm hlw Keeble Hawson has helped secure a court order for damages and costs worth more than £250,000 for Dutch businessman Hans Kersten after a Cardiff high court ruled in his favour in a complex case involving imported coffee beans.

Judge Keyser ruled that Ferrari’s Coffee Limited, a Wales-based coffee processing and roasting company, should pay Mr Kersten a six figure sum in damages for the use of 62 tonnes of coffee beans, together with what is likely to amount to a further six figure sum in costs.

Michael Peacock, a partner at hlw Keeble Hawson, who worked with colleague Carla Rist on the case, said: “We are pleased that our client has been successful in what was a particularly complex international case involving several parties and numerous sets of solicitors that took several years to bring to court.

“We had to enlist the help of expert coffee brokers to value high quality beans, including 11 tonnes from Venezuela – the first ever to be imported to the UK.”

Mr Kersten, who lives in Mexico, instructed hlw Keeble Hawson to act for him to reclaim the value of the coffee beans. The court heard that FCL had sold or used approximately 47 tonnes of beans and not paid Mr Kersten or his business partners.

hlw Keeble Hawson, one of Yorkshire’s biggest law firms with offices in Sheffield, Leeds and Doncaster, is one of only five UK members of the international Consulegis network of independent law firms and professional advisers.

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