Argentina May Get U.S. High Court Hearing in Bond Case

Argentina may get a U.S. Supreme Court hearing in its legal battle with a hedge fund seeking to collect $2.5 billion owed by the South American country on defaulted bonds.

The justices today signaled interest in the case by asking the Obama administration for advice on an appeal by Argentina. The country’s multifaceted, decade-long clash with NML Capital Ltd., an affiliate of billionaire Paul Singer’s Elliott Management Corp., stems from Argentina’s 2001 default on $95 billion in bonds.

NML is seeking to enforce judgments it won in U.S. court cases. Billionaire Kenneth Dart’s EM Ltd. is pressing similar claims. Dart isn’t involved in the Supreme Court case.

The appeal seeks to block a court order requiring Bank of America Corp. and state-owned Banco de la Nacion Argentina to turn over information about Argentina’s assets.

Argentina contends that it is protected by the U.S. Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act. The country says that law limits such orders to assets that are in the U.S. and are used for a commercial activity. The New York-based 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected that argument.

The case is Argentina v. NML Capital, 12-842.

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