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Five Serle Court members feature in The Lawyer’s ‘Blockbuster trials to watch out for in October’

Five Serle Court members are featured in The Lawyer’s ‘Blockbuster trials to watch out for in October’.

Daniel Lightman KC, Charlotte Beynon, and Tim Benham-Mirando were mentioned in relation to the BHS Group liquidation proceedings – Re BHS Group Ltd (in liquidation) – in which they are acting for the third respondent, Dominic Chandler.

The liquidators of four of the BHS group of companies have brought claims for alleged wrongful trading, misfeasance, breach of statutory and fiduciary duties against the companies’ former directors. The claims are alleged to be worth over £130m and are said to have arisen in the period following the sale of BHS by Sir Philip Green to Retail Acquisitions Limited for £1.

Earlier in the proceedings Edwin Johnson J gave an important judgment ([2022] Bus LR 1510) in which he allowed Mr Chandler’s appeal against the decision of Deputy ICC Judge Schaffer ([2022] 2 BCLC 145; [2022] BCC 457) reaffirming that causation and quantum are essential elements of a cause of action under section 214 of the Insolvency Act 1986, as they are for breach of duty claims under section 212, and that it is essential for liquidators to plead these elements. He further held that given the scale of the claims and complexity of the BHS litigation, it is not acceptable for a case on the date of knowledge for the purposes of a claim under section 214 to be left “at large” on the pleadings.

Jonathan Adkin KC and Zahler Bryan were mentioned in relation to the ‘tuna bonds’ litigation – Republic of Mozambique v Privinvest and others – in which they are acting for the Republic of Mozambique.  

This case concerns an alleged enormous international fraud said to have been perpetrated on the Republic to secure its entry into sovereign guarantees purportedly to secure funding for maritime protection and tuna fishing contracts. The alleged conspiracy included the payment of bribes by entities within the Privinvest group, with the loss caused by the alleged conspiracy having had a devastating impact on the Republic, the third poorest nation in the world.  

Read the full article here (behind a paywall).