Three men who tried to force Arkansas-based Cannon Express into involuntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy have changed their minds, and will likely face penalties for filing a frivolous lawsuit.

In May, Ed Bennett, Farish Kincaid and Felix Pruss filed an involuntary bankruptcy petition against Cannon, saying the company, which hadn't posted a profit in the last four quarters, owed them $1.3 million. Their attorney said the three men worked to bring nearly 240 drivers to the United States to work for Cannon, a job for which the company still owed them money. Cannon denied the allegations; one of the men was unknown to the company.
In a bankruptcy hearing earlier this week, the petitioners requested that their suit be dismissed. The judge complied, but made it clear that by allowing the petitioners to dismiss their own case, he was not dismissing Cannon's right to seek damages from them, according to a statement from the company.
According to bankruptcy law, the petitioners may be held responsible for attorney's fees and costs at the discretion of the court, and for actual damages, including punitive damages, if the court finds that they filed their petition in bad faith.
The judge set a hearing date of Aug. 28 to decide what attorney's fees and costs that the petitioners would have to pay Cannon as a consequence of their actions. A follow-up hearing will look at Cannon's claim for damages, including punitive damages, against the petitioners.
"The suit was designed, we believe, to damage the company, and they have accomplished that," said President Dean Cannon, who told that one of the petitioners had been fired and may have filed the involuntary bankruptcy petition in revenge.