Datec Electronic Holdings Ltd and Another v United Parcels Service Ltd: CA 29 Nov 2005

The parties put forward alternative explanations for the loss of a mail packet. Richards LJ said: ‘Nor do I see any inconsistency between my approach and the observations of Lord Brandon in The Popi M. The conclusion that employee theft was the probable cause of the loss is not based on a process of elimination of the impossible, in application of the dictum of Sherlock Holmes. It does take into consideration the relative probabilities or improbabilities of various possible causes as part of the overall process of reasoning, but I do not read The Popi M as precluding such a course. Employee theft is, as I have said, a plausible explanation and is very far from being an extremely improbable event. A finding that employee theft is more likely than not to have been the cause of the loss accords perfectly well with common sense. Thus the various objections to the finding made by the trial judge in The Popi M simply do not bite on the facts of this case.’
Richards LJ
[2005] EWCA Civ 1418
Carriage of Goods by Road Act 1965
England and Wales
Appeal fromDatec Electronic Holdings Ltd and Another v United Parcels Service Ltd and Another ComC 22-Feb-2005
The claimant sought damages for the loss of goods in transit under the care of the defendant. Andrew Smith J held as regards the burden of proof in an allegation of wilful misconduct: ‘I should add that I was properly reminded by counsel that the . .

Cited by:
Appeal fromDatec Electronics Holdings Ltd and others v United Parcels Services Ltd HL 16-May-2007
The defendants had taken on the delivery of a quantity of the claimant’s computers. The equipment reached one depot, but then was lost or stolen. The parties disputed whether the Convention rules applied. UPS said that the claimant had agreed that . .
CitedIde v ATB Sales Ltd and Another CA 28-Apr-2008
Each appellant challenged how the judge had decided between alternative proofs of causation of the respective loss. In Ide, the claimant asserted a fault in a cycle handlebar, and in Lexus, the claimant asserted that it caught fire whilst . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 18 January 2021; Ref: scu.235435