Weekend wrap: Congratulations, crisis and a curious discovery

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Making legal news this week a national law firm welcomed its new managing partner, an ASX-listed compensation firm was put on notice and a US lawyer claimed to have found a piece of the missing MH370 flight.
 
Former government advisor Phillip Salem began his new role as national managing partner of Sparke Helmore this week.
 
Speaking to Australasian Lawyer, Salem said his focus will be on emphasising client needs.
 
“I’d like to become an organisation that’s really client focussed, that’s not only solving problems for our clients but finding them and helping them resolve problems,” he said.
 
From congratulations to crisis, a banking syndicate led by Wespac and NAB has put ASX-listed Slater & Gordon on notice after the firm posted $958m first half losses and its share price plummeted 90% in just 12 months.
 
According to a report by the ABC, the firm may be forced to pay $800m worth of debt repayments within a year unless the banks agree to amend the firm’s debt facilities by the end of April.
 
The firm is also now likely to face a class action led by long-standing rival firm Maurice Blackburn with thousands of aggrieved shareholders reportedly already signed up.
 
Finally, US lawyer and blogger Blaine Alan Gibson made an interesting discovery on a sandbank off Mozambique this week, which is believed to be a piece of wreckage from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
 
Gibson has spent the last 12 months travelling to remote islands around the Indian Ocean, in search of evidence of the plane which vanished almost two years ago with 239 people on board.
 
He handed the piece to Mozambique authorities after reporting the discovery, chairman of the Institute of Civil Aviation of Mozambique commander Joao de Abreu Martins told CNN. An unnamed US official has said that the piece is a part of the aircraft’s tail that is horizontal as the plane flies.
 

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