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Pioneer Freight Futures Files Chapter 15 in U.S,

Pioneer Freight Futures Co., a British Virgin Islands-based trader of shipping contracts, sought court protection from creditors in the U.S. to aid its liquidation overseas.

A Chapter 15 petition filed today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan listed as much as $500 million in both debt and assets. Companies undergoing reorganization in a foreign court can help reorganize U.S. assets or seek protection from U.S. creditors under Chapter 15 filings.

Creditors in the British Virgin Islands are “investigating the possibility that the company’s assets were transferred through, or are currently located in, the United States,” Pioneer’s liquidators said in court papers.

The British Virgin Islands courts put the company into liquidation in February 2010, according to court records.

The company’s sole business was trading forward freight agreements, a type of contract that lets traders hedge against changes in the price of shipping dry bulk goods. Pioneer’s operations were mainly in Hong Kong and Beijing, according to court papers.

The case is In re Pioneer Freight Futures Co., 13-bk-12324, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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