A firm which has provided security on Dublin's Luas since 2009 claims the operators of the light rail network have wrongfully left them out of the tender process for the contract to continue operating the service.
STT Risk Management says the €150 million contract to operate the Luas includes €15m for security services over a five year period.
It has brought High Court proceedings against the operators, Transdev, claiming it was obliged to include STT as a subcontractor for security as part of Transdev's bid for the contract to operate the network for the next six years.
It seeks, if necessary, an injunction preventing Transdev from progressing the tender other than with STT as security contractor.
Among the orders and declarations it seeks is that Transdev pay STT the profits from the successful tender. It also seeks damages for breach of contract, negligence and breach of duty, among other things.
The case was admitted to the fast track Commercial Court list today on consent between the parties by Mr Justice Robert Haughton.
The tendering process to choose an operator, which includes an option to extend for a further five years, for a contract starting in September next (2019), is the responsibility of Transport Infrastructure Ireland/National Transport Authority.
STT director, Ted O'Connor, says in an affidavit that in May 2017, STT and Transdeventered a memorandum of understanding for the purpose of collaborating in the tender process.
STT has provided confidential information to Transdev and co-operated fully in preparation of documentation, Mr O'Connor says. This included allowing access to STT's premises, staff, pricing structure and staff training/recruitment.
Last February, it was learned Transdev was proceeding to tender without including STT, he says.
STT later sought an undertaking the tender would not be submitted without its inclusion but this was refused.
Mr O'Connor says Transdev is in breach of its contract and a number of duties to STT.
Mr Justice Haughton was told directions on how the case should proceed had been agreed. He was also told there may be an application for security of legal costs by Transdev against STT.