New York judge holds Argentina in contempt of court over its defiance of his bond orders

Associated Press

A New York judge has found Argentina in contempt of court for its open defiance of his orders regarding U.S. hedge funds that hold Argentina bonds.

Judge Thomas Griesa made the finding Monday at a Manhattan hearing. He reserved decision on sanctions pending further proceedings.

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Lawyers for the U.S. hedge funds led by billionaire hedge fund investor Paul Singer told the judge in court papers that Argentina's refusal to comply with his orders was a clear case of contempt of court. Argentina owes the U.S. bond holders $1.5 billion.

Lawyers for Argentina forwarded to the judge a letter sent to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry saying the request for a contempt-of-court finding was "completely absurd." Argentina said such an order would be unlawful by international standards.