On March 31, 2021, Judge Jill N. Parrish of the U.S. District Court for the State of Utah entered judgment in the amount of $20,219,037 to Burbidge Mitchell’s client, Celtig, LLC, in a matter involving breach of commercial sales and distribution agreement.

Plaintiff Celtig is a developer and manufacturer of an innovative industrial material, graphene—a material that is extraordinarily strong, thin, lightweight, and conductive. Celtig entered into two integrated commercial agreements, both spanning 99 years, with Defendant Evergreen Strategies, LLC, owned by Aaron Patey.

Evergreen promised to buy, and to develop distribution networks for, Celtig’s graphene.However, not long after the parties signed their agreements, Evergreen breached its promises, failing to pick up the graphene subject of one of its first purchase orders, and failing to pay for the same. When Celtig later demanded assurances that Evergreen had the financial and other wherewithal to perform its obligations under the agreements, Evergreen failed to provide those assurances, again breaching the agreements. Evergreen had promised to take certain quantities of graphene, at a certain price, for the first three years of the parties’ commercial relationship. In the litigation that followed, Celtig sought to recover its lost “benefit of the bargain” for these first three years of lost sales. Celtig sought recovery against Evergreen and against Evergreen’s alleged “alter egos,” owner Aaron Patey and certain other entities owned and controlled by Mr. Patey, including PSD International, LLC and Relay Advanced Materials, Inc. Evergreen countersued for $500,000,000, based on Celtig’s alleged failure to deliver graphene to Evergreen’s specifications and Celtig’s allegedly improper termination of the agreements.

During the course of discovery, when Mr. Patey and his entities repeatedly failed to comply with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and various Court orders, Burbidge Mitchell successfully petitioned the Court for default judgment on Evergreen’s counterclaims. Judge Parrish entered summary judgment for Celtig on its affirmative claims. Later, however, this summary judgment ruling was superseded by an overarching order of default in favor of Celtig and against all Defendants on issues of liability and alter ego. Following an evidentiary hearing on damages, the Court entered judgment for Celtig in the amount of $20,219,037.