Scarborough lawyer recalls visit to Libya for cargo case

Iain Butterworth in Libya
Iain Butterworth in Libya

A Scarborough lawyer has added to his portfolio of international work after returning from £3 million case in Libya.

Shipping lawyer and ships engineer Iain Butterworth of Myton Law returned from Libya on November 15, where he was representing a London-based insurer client in a case, which could result in a cargo damage claim of around six million US dollars.

Mr Butterworth, who lives in Scarborough and is a director of Hull-based firm Myton Law, flew out to Benghazi on November 9 on behalf of Navigators P&I, the City of London based insurer of marine risks, which is part of the American-owned Navigators Group, Inc.

The case relates to a cargo of valuable corn being shipped from the Ukraine to Benghazi.

During the trip Mr Butterworth worked alongside the locally-appointed surveyor, the cargo owners, Libyan authorities and ship owner’s locally-appointed lawyer in order to try to find a resolution to the problem.

Other assignments this year have taken Mr Butterworth to Thailand, West Africa and a number of European countries on a variety of shipping cases.

Commenting on his trip to Libya, Mr Butterworth said: “When I got the call to see if I would be prepared to travel to Libya, I was slightly reluctant, particularly when I reviewed the official travel advice. This painted a very different picture to what I found.

“The hotels, whilst scarce, are very good and, so far, there have been no security issues. The infrastructure is a mess and roads and buildings in extremely poor order.

“However, the place has massive potential. It is also rich in resources so, theoretically, it has the revenue to rebuild.

“There is a lot of unfinished development which will hopefully start again once the country’s political situation smoothes out.

“Being based in Benghazi, where the revolution began, I detected a sense of pride and everyone seemed very excited about rebuilding the country.

“My guide played his role in the revolution, making trips towards Tripoli in trucks and boats carrying supplies and ammunition to support the advance of the fighters to Tripoli.”