US judge readies response to Argentina's threats

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

NEW YORK (AP) — A U.S. judge frustrated by debt-ridden Argentina's refusal to comply with his orders is being urged to take stronger action against the South American nation.

Judge Thomas Griesa scheduled a hearing for Thursday afternoon, a week after he threatened to find Argentina in contempt of court.

Lawyers for U.S. hedge funds that hold Argentina bonds have asked Griesa to issue a contempt order. They say the move is warranted because Argentina plans to enact legislation to dodge the judge's orders.

They say Argentina plans to make payments only to bondholders who swapped their bonds for lesser valued ones after Argentina's 2001 default.

The U.S. hedge funds are owed about $1.5 billion. Argentina says making that payment would cause other bondholders to demand over $20 billion.