David Yates May 5, 2015, 10:37am


A notice of appearance of lead counsel was recently filed in a wrongful death suit brought after a shrimping boat caught fire.

As previously reported, Kha and Ngo Thi Dang, individually and on behalf of the estate of Teo Cung Dung, filed suit July 18 in the Jefferson County District Court against TL&S Corp. and Hieu Trung Tran.

The original petition was filed through attorney Anthony G. Buzbee of The Buzbee Law Firm in Houston.

The notice of appearance, filed April 28, states Houston attorney Chad Pinkerton is now lead counsel.

According to the complaint, the plaintiffs’ son, Dung, was participating in a month-long shrimping trip on board the Lucky Diamond. He and his three fellow crew members were in the Gulf of Mexico on May 10, 2012, when the boat’s master observed heavy smoke and fire coming from a deck area near crew quarters.

The master made attempts to extinguish the fire, but was not successful and ultimately abandoned the ship, the suit states. He boarded another boat and cut the mooring lines to the Lucky Diamond.

The complaint states the vessel burned for several hours before sinking, the suit states. Three crew members on the vessel, including Teo Cong Dang, died.

Due to their son’s death, the Dangs lost his maintenance, care, support, services, companionship and society, the complaint says.

They blame defendant TL&S Corp., which owned the boat, and Hieu Trung Tran for contributing to their son’s death, saying they negligently failed to ensure necessary inspections occurred, failed to ensure equipment was in a safe operating condition, failed to ensure the vessel was safe for travel and failed to institute proper safety measures, among other negligent actions.

The Dangs seek a judgment of $2.5 million, plus pre- and post-judgment interest at the legal rate, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Case No. A195-894

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