Seadrill Secures Dismissal of Securities Action

Skadden won a motion to dismiss a putative securities class action brought against Seadrill Limited and North Atlantic Drilling Limited. The complaint alleged that the companies had failed to disclose the possible impact of an evolving global sanctions regime on contracts with Rosneft, the Russian oil company. On June 20, Judge Lorna Schofield of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York rejected the plaintiffs' claims and dismissed the complaint, finding that the defendants had disclosed the risks sanctions posed to their contracts with Rosneft through SEC filings and media statements, and that contrary to the plaintiffs' allegations the defendants had not undermined those disclosures through certain vague or optimistic statements. The court also found that the plaintiffs failed to plead scienter.