Bird Marella Wins Trial for Education Company and Upholds Enforceability of Multi-million Dollar Judgment

Bird Marella principals Ekwan Rhow and Timothy Yoo secured another trial victory for test preparation and admissions consulting company Elite of Los Angeles. In 2013, Mr. Rhow obtained a jury verdict against former Elite employee Christopher John Hamilton for misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of fiduciary duties, and interference with economic advantage when he formed his new entity Summa Consulting. That trial victory was named one of the top verdicts of 2013 by the Daily Journal. Subsequently, Mr. Hamilton attempted to evade responsibility for his liabilities and discharge the judgment by filing for bankruptcy. Mr. Rhow and Mr. Yoo took the issue of nondischargeability to trial before the Honorable Christopher B. Latham in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of California. After a one-week trial and extensive cross-examination of Mr. Hamilton and his cohorts, Mr. Rhow and Mr. Yoo were able to prove that Mr. Hamilton’s conduct was willful and malicious under section 523(a)(6) of the Bankruptcy Code and obtained a finding that the underlying judgment was nondischargeable in its entirety.