(Reuters) — Kirkland & Ellis, a top U.S. restructuring firm, on Tuesday fought a request by junior bondholders that it be disqualified from parts of casino group Caesars Entertainment‘s $18 billion bankruptcy case, according to court documents.
The request to disqualify K&E was made last month by Jones Day, which represents bitter junior bondholders of the bankrupt unit of Caesars Entertainment Corp.
Jones Day asked U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Benjamin Goldgar to reconsider at a Nov. 18 hearing his previous decision to allow Caesars to hire K&E, led by prominent bankruptcy attorney James Sprayregen, whom they accused of misleading the court during a trial over the firm’s retention last spring.
In a court filing on Tuesday, Kirkland & Ellis asked the court to reject the motion, saying that the allegations were without merit and that it was time to close this chapter and proceed with the complex task of reorganizing Caesars.
“K&E partner James Sprayregen testified truthfully, accurately and completely in all respects,” the law firm said.
Sprayregen, known in the sector as the “godfather of restructuring” for leading some of the biggest Chapter 11 cases, has already faced off with Jones Day’s Bruce Bennett in the bankruptcy of the city of Detroit.
The fresh dispute adds another layer of bickering in the contentious Caeasars bankruptcy, which involves the biggest U.S. private equity and hedge fund firms.