Dispute between family members associated with Claddagh ring firm adjourned for mediation talks

A dispute between members of a family whose firm sells and makes jewellery including the world-famous Claddagh rings has been adjourned for mediation talks.

Dispute between family members associated with Claddagh ring firm adjourned for mediation talks

A dispute between members of a family whose firm sells and makes jewellery including the world-famous Claddagh rings has been adjourned for mediation talks.

The row involves brothers Andrew and Philip Fried, who are shareholders of Claddagh Jewellers Ltd, which operates stores in Galway and Dublin, as well as selling its products online.

Andrew Fried claims his brother has attempted to interfere with the company's business.

In separate proceedings, Philip claims Andrew and a company Claddagh Ring Ltd has breached his trademark.

The matter was mentioned before Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds, who adjourned the case to October after being informed that both sides were open to mediation.

Certain undertakings previously offered to the court are to remain in place, the Judge said.

A separate, but related, application was also made to the court by joint receivers Michael McAteer and Aengus Burns, who were appointed over the premises from which the company trades from in Galway, seeking permission from the court to obtain the papers in the case.

Marcus Dowling Bl, for the joint receivers, said that the application was being made arising out of his client's concerns after reading reports about the case in the media.

His clients are involved in proceedings against a company called Laszlo Fried, who is the father of Andrew and Philip Fried, and companies Lazlo Jewellers Ltd, Jaszai Ltd, and Claddagh Jewellers Ltd.

Financial fund Promontoria (Aran), which acquired the loans from Ulster Bank, claims in those proceedings that it is owed €16m due to a failure to repay the balance of loans advanced by Ulster Bank to Laszlo Fried and Jaszai approximately 10 years ago.

Counsel said his clients were appointed receivers over a property in Mainguard Street in Galway from where the company traded in 2013 and from which to date allegedly no rent has been paid to the receivers.

Permission to bring the application was granted by Judge Reynolds, who adjourned that matter to next week.

Andrew Fried, of Leac lian, Barna, Co. Galway, has brought proceedings against Philip who he claims has in conjunction with his father Laszlo, who is not a shareholder nor a director of the firm, attempted to interfere with and frustrate the company's business.

Andrew Fried, represented by Brian Conroy Bl, claims that Philip Fried, along with his father had for some time allegedly been interfering with the company's suppliers.

Andrew Fried seeks orders from the Court including one prohibiting his brother and others from contacting the company's suppliers, and that either Philip sells him his stake in the company or buys him out.

He also seeks a declaration that Philip's actions are in total disregard to and are oppressive to Andrew Fried’s capacity as a member of the company.

The claims are denied.

In separate, but related, proceedings against Andrew Fried and Claddagh Ring Ltd, Mr Philip Fried of Thornberry, Barna, Galway, claims he is the sole owner of the trademark "Claddagh Jewellers".

In that action, Philip Fried, represented by Stephen Moran Bl, seeks various orders and declarations including one restraining his brother and the company from infringing what he claims is his trademark.

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