James Bogle in Commercial Court injunction success

October 23, 2015

Civil team leader, James Bogle, acting for the Claimants, succeeded in obtaining a freezing injunction over the Defendants’ assets in the sum of £Stg11 million.

Ikon International (HK) Holdings Public Co Ltd v Ikon Finance Ltd and ors. High Court (QB Commercial Ct) [2015] EWHC 3088 (Comm) (Andrew Smith J). The claimant company applied without notice for worldwide freezing orders against the defendants and injunctive relief in support of arbitration proceedings. The claimant was a joint venture company registered in Hong Kong. The joint venture was to earn profits from providing online services to customers trading from home on personal computers by accessing a trading programme over the internet through which the customers could take a position in stocks, currencies or commodities. The second defendant and companies in which he was interested had a 50% interest in the joint venture. The remaining 50% was held by another individual (T) and his companies. Trading took place through the second defendant’s companies and the joint venture agreement provided that he and his companies were to be jointly and severally liable to make and effect the payment of “trading profit”. Under the agreement the obligation to pay the trading profit was to be “absolute and unconditional, free standing and autonomous of all other rights and obligations whatsoever”. The joint venture agreement provided for English law and exclusive jurisdiction. The claimant sought a worldwide freezing injunction and interim relief under the Arbitration Act 1996 s.44 in support of arbitration proceedings. In order to obtain a freezing injunction a claimant had to show a real risk that a judgment would go unsatisfied if the order was not made and that the order would mitigate that risk, and the claimant’s evidence was just sufficient to cross that threshold. Thereafter, the Defendants settled the underlying claim after lengthy negotiations.