Ousted Liverpool owners plan return to UK

MIAMI - Lawyers for former Liverpool co-owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett intend to return to the High Court in London as they begin their bid to secure damages from the sale of the club to NESV.

Texas attorney Tom Melsheimer, who represents the two Americans, told Reuters they want relief from Thursday's High Court ruling that ordered them to halt proceedings in Texas and said they were consulting with English counsel.

Earlier, a statement issued on behalf of the pair said they were seeking at least $1.6 billion in damages from what they called "an illegal sale".

Lawyers for the duo withdrew a temporary restraining order in a Dallas court on Friday but then said they would be turning their attention back to the High Court in London, which on Thursday ruled they had no right to act in Texas.

Melsheimer dismissed media reports that Hicks and Gillett's withdrawal of their case in Texas meant they were no longer seeking damages and that was confirmed by Keith Oliver, of Peters and Peters in London, who represent Hicks in the UK.

"Not at all," he said, adding the withdrawal of the case in Texas merely meant the pair had complied with the wishes of the High Court.

Having been unable to stop the sale of the Premier League club to New England Sports Ventures for 300 million pounds on Friday, Hicks and Gillett are now concentrating on winning damages.

UNFAIR ORDER

"The focus should be on the English proceedings," said Melsheimer. "We are very respectful of the English court system and we want to make sure that we follow the letter and spirit of the court's order.

"We believe that it is appropriate to go back to court in England and seek relief from what we think is an unfair and over-broad order that had been entered without the benefit of a full hearing of both sides," he added.

Melsheimer said the ruling on Thursday had taken place without legal representation from Hicks and Gillett and they wanted their view to be put to the High Court.

"We want to be present and be heard. I think the court will realise that its original order is over-broad and unfair," he said.

"The fact remains, I don't think any judge in England or anywhere has had a chance to hear both sides of the story, We know the court have no interest in being unfair," he said.

Asked whether the moves in the UK could include attempts to gain compensation as well as the overturning of Thursday's order, Melsheimer said:

"I think it's broadest possible relief. We will be consulting with English counsel. It certainly will include relief from the order that purports to restrict our legal rights outside the country."