Commercial Law Keyed to Warren
Esso Petroleum Canada v. Security Pacific Bank
Prior to October 22, 1987, plaintiff Esso Petroleum Canada (the “plaintiff”) entered into a contract with Valley Oil Co., Inc (“Valley Oil”) to sell Valley Oil aviation gasoline. A condition of sale was that Valley Oil obtain a standby letter of credit naming the plaintiff as beneficiary. As a condition to issuing the standby letter of credit, the defendant Security Pacific Bank (the “defendant”) required Valley Oil to obtain a backup letter of credit from Valley Oil’s customer Western Pioneer, Inc. On October 22, the defendant issued to the plaintiff an irrevocable standby letter of credit. On November 1, the plaintiff delivered the fuel to Valley Oil. The letter of credit provided that it was governed by the Uniform Customs and Practice for Documentary Credits International Chamber of Commerce (the “UCP”). On Friday, November 13, 1987, the plaintiff presented its draft drawn on the defendant under the letter for credit, and documents fulfilling the terms and conditions of the letter of credit. Later that same day, the defendant informed the plaintiff that it would not honor the draft and demand for payment due to certain discrepancies. The defendant was unable to supply a list of discrepancies until the following Monday. The plaintiff attempted to correct the discrepancies, but again, the defendant failed to honor the draft. On January 20, 1988, various creditors of Valley Oil filed a petition for bankruptcy naming Valley Oil as a debtor. On February 10, 1988, the plaintiff filed this action against the defendant seeking money damages in the amount of $1,218,116.90 plus interest. The second amended complaint stated several claims for relief in contract and tort.
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