Attorney Brian Beckcom Files Lawsuit Against Edison Chouest and Chevron on Behalf of Captain Wren Thomas Over Piracy Attack in West Africa

Share Article

Brian Beckcom of Houston-based law firm VB Attorneys, who represented half the crew of the Maersk Alabama who were attacked by Somali pirates in 2009, is representing Captain Thomas, who was kidnapped off his ship in the Gulf of Guinea and held hostage, tortured, and malnourished for 18 days.

VB Attorneys

Captain Wren Thomas, an American ship captain, has filed a lawsuit (1) against his employer as a result of a piracy and kidnapping event that occurred one year ago off the Coast of West Africa.

The lawsuit claims that while working as a boat captain in the region of West Africa for Edison Chouest Offshore, pirates removed Thomas from his vessel at gunpoint on October 23, 2013. Thomas was taken into the jungles of West Africa, where he was tortured, malnourished, and held prisoner by the pirates for eighteen days. The lawsuit also claims that Edison Chouest ignored a request from Captain Thomas to transfer out of Nigerian waters after Captain Thomas received specific threats from Nigerian pirates.

Captain Thomas is represented by Brian Beckcom of VB Attorneys, a personal injury law firm based in Houston, Texas. Mr. Beckcom also represented the crew of the Maersk Alabama (2) after Somali pirates attacked them in 2009. That ordeal was made into a Hollywood blockbuster called Captain Phillips and starred Tom Hanks as Captain Phillips.

The lawsuit, filed in the 125th Harris County District Court, cause number 2014-60458, states that Edison Chouest was not only aware of the dangerous conditions in the Gulf of Guinea, but that Edison Chouest “failed to take adequate steps to provide appropriate levels of security and safety for their employees, including Captain Thomas.”

According to Mr. Beckcom, “We intend to show that Edison Chouest knew of a general threat of piracy in the region, knew of specific threats to Captain Thomas, had their vessels attacked shortly before Captain Thomas’s kidnapping, and failed to take appropriate steps to protect its employees in the region. And we will prove that during his 18 days of captivity and even up to the current day, Gary Chouest has never once reached out to Captain Thomas.”

To learn more about this case, read the lawsuit, or stay abreast of continuing developments in this litigation, visit

Case Numbers:

1. Texas 2014-60458, 125th Harris County District Court
2. Alabama 02-CV-2012-900747-90, Circuit Court of Mobile County and Texas 2009-64336, 164th Harris County District Court

About VB Attorneys:
Based in Houston, Texas, VB Attorneys handles cases all over the world. The three Board Certified attorneys and their team of associate attorneys have successfully handled many high-profile work-related fatality and injury cases over the years, including work accidents occurring both on land and on water. To learn more about VB Attorneys, visit our website or call us at 877.724.7800.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Danielle Ruderman

Emily Corwin
Visit website