Blackbeard Shipwreck Lawsuit Goes To Trial
North Carolina Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Discoverers of Queen Anne's Revenge
By: Intersal, Inc.
On Friday Nov. 1st the NC Supreme Court ruled in favor of Intersal, insuring that it's lawsuit against the State's Department of Natural & Culural Resources ("NC DNCR"), originally filed in 2015, will go to trial.
"Intersal is gratified that the NC Supreme Court recognized the validity of our contract." said John Masters, Intersal's Chairman of the Board. "Now, finally, Intersal will go in front of a judge with unquestioned jurisdiction and authority to rule on the merits of this case, and a jury of our peers to determine damages. A fair and open hearing of the facts is all we have been seeking for the last 5 years".
"It is very sad, for the people of North Carolina, that NC DNCR did not devote all the time and effort into cooperation per the 2013 Settlement Agreement." said David Reeder, Intersal's CEO and President.
The 2013 Settlement Agreement between Intersal and NC DNCR prohibited the State from unrestricted posting of pictures & video from QAR's recovery or of her artifacts to the Internet. Intersal's expert witness report documents NC DNCR'S breech of the 2013 Settlement, by its posting of over 2000 images and hours of video of QAR to the Internet, and calculates damages at up to $129 Million.
Intersal will also seek $11 Million in damages for additional violations of the 2013 Settlement by NC DNCR, including those connected to it's denial of Intersal's permit to search for the 1750 wreck of the merchant vessel El Salvador, also lost at Beaufort Inlet.
In a related case, on Tuesday Nov. 5th Intersal's QAR Videographer Nautilus Productions, a party to the 2013 Settlement Agreement, argued its copyright infringement case against The State of North Carolina in the US Supreme Court.
"It's surreal that 300 years after Blackbeard died, we're here in the Supreme Court fighting a battle over piracy that involves the most infamous pirate in history" said Rick Allen of Nautilus. "We spent almost 20 years diving on a pirate shipwreck in dangerous conditions, filming underwater, and doing everything we could to legally protect our work. Letting states pirate copyrights without paying for them just isn't fair."
Intersal is represented by David Harris of the LinckHarris Law Group, of Durham, NC.
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John Masters, COB