GE Capital Accused of Not Telling AerCap About Brazil Suit

General Electric Co.’s financial services unit was sued by units of AerCap Holdings NV for allegedly failing to tell the aircraft-leasing company about a lawsuit in Brazil.

According to a complaint filed Feb. 3 in New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, a lawyer for General Electric Capital Corp. told AerCap in February 2010 that the company was liable for “millions of dollars” in a court case involving Transbrasil SA, the bankrupt Brazilian airline.

The airline had sued GE and AerCap in February 2001 to void promissory notes issued in 1999 in connection with the leases of two engines and an aircraft, according to the complaint. GE lost an appeal of a 2007 judgment entered against AerCap and other defendants, and Transbrasil is asking Brazilian courts to enforce the judgment, according to the complaint.

“GE had concealed from AerCap that it was named as a defendant in the lawsuit and had directed the defense of the lawsuit -- with catastrophic results -- without AerCap’s knowledge or consent since 2001,” AerCap said in the complaint.

Transbrasil has said the appeals court decision entitles it to about $223 million, including interest, from AerCap and other defendants, according to the complaint.

General Electric hasn’t been served with the lawsuit and doesn’t comment on pending litigation, Daniel Whitney, a spokesman for GE Capital Aviation Services, said in an e-mail.

The case is AerCap Ireland Ltd. v. General Electric Capital Corp., 650341/2012, New York State Supreme Court (Manhattan).

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