Mahonia Limited v JP Morgan Chase Bankwest Lb Ag: QBD 3 Aug 2004

The Claimant claimed on a letter of credit issued by the Defendant on behalf of Enron Ltd, who asserted it was not liable to pay there having been unlawful behaviour by Enron Ltd. Swap agreements had been entered into, and the defendant said the claimant was in effect a shell company. The bank would not have accepted them as able to support the risks if they had been told of the position, and accounts were misleading through the removal of balances by non-standard accounting practices.
Held: The accounting practices were not improper. It is necessary for any unlawfulness to be actionable at the suit of the victim against at least one of the co-conspirators. The defendant could not make good its claim of a conspiracy. The claims under the guarantees could proceed.
Cooke The Honourable Mr Justice Cooke
[2004] EWHC 1938 (Comm)
England and Wales
See alsoMahonia Ltd v JP Morgan Chase Bank ComC 30-Jul-2003
Enforceability of documentary credits – strike out of defence refused. . .
CitedEl Ajou v Dollar Land Holdings Ltd CA 2-Dec-1993
The court was asked whether, for the purposes of establishing a company’s liability under the knowing receipt head of constructive trust, the knowledge of one of its directors can be treated as having been the knowledge of the company.
Held: . .
CitedTesco Supermarkets Ltd v Nattrass HL 31-Mar-1971
Identification of Company’s Directing Mind
In a prosecution under the 1968 Act, the court discussed how to identify the directing mind and will of a company, and whether employees remained liable when proper instructions had been given to those in charge of a local store.
Held: ‘In the . .
CitedLonrho Ltd v Shell Petroleum Co Ltd (No 2) HL 1-Apr-1981
No General Liability in Tort for Wrongful Acts
The plaintiff had previously constructed an oil supply pipeline from Beira to Mozambique. After Rhodesia declared unilateral independence, it became a criminal offence to supply to Rhodesia without a licence. The plaintiff ceased supply as required, . .
CitedLonrho plc v Fayed HL 2-Jan-1991
In a conspiracy, the intent to injure need not be the primary intent, but there must be some intent which involves the conspiring parties directing their minds towards the victim or a category of persons which would include the victim as a target to . .
CitedKuwait Oil Tanker Company SAK and Another v Al Bader and Others CA 18-May-2000
The differences between tortious conspiracies where the underlying acts were either themselves unlawful or not, did not require that the conspiracy claim be merged in the underlying acts where those acts were tortious. A civil conspiracy to injure . .
CitedMogul Steamship Company Limited v McGregor Gow and Co QBD 10-Aug-1885
Ship owners formed themselves into an association to protect their trading interests which then caused damage to rival ship owners. The plaintiffs complained about being kept out of the conference of shipowners trading between China and London.
CitedMogul Steamship Company Limited v McGregor Gow and Co CA 2-Jul-1889
Ship-owners formed an association which in this action others claimed to be a tortious conspiracy.
Held: There is a cause of action against the conspirators where there is an agreement which constitutes an indictable conspiracy and that . .
CitedCrofter Hand Woven Harris Tweed Company Limited v Veitch HL 15-Dec-1941
The plaintiffs sought an interdict against the respondents, a dockers’ union, who sought to impose an embargo on their tweeds as they passed through the port of Stornoway.
Held: A trade embargo was not tortious because the predominant purpose . .
CitedYukong Lines Ltd v Rendsburg Investments Corporation and Others (No 2) QBD 23-Sep-1997
Repudiation by charterer: Funds were transferred by a charterer’s ‘alter ego’ to another company controlled by him with intent to defeat owner’s claim – whether ‘alter ego’ acting as undisclosed principal of charterer – whether permissible to pierce . .
CitedSurzur Overseas Ltd v Koros and others CA 25-Feb-1999
A defendant to a worldwide Mareva injunction had failed to give full disclosure of all his assets in an affidavit filed with the court. False evidence as to sale of the assets in question was later manufactured and placed before the court. The . .
ApprovedMichaels and Michaels v Taylor Woodrow Developments Ltd, etc ChD 19-Apr-2000
The respondents sought to strike out the claim for conspiracy and failure to comply with the Act. The respondent was landlord of premises occupied by the claimants. They had served a notice under the Act of their intention to sell.
Held: The . .
CitedFoster v Driscoll, Lindsay v Attfield, Lindsay v Driscoll 1929
During the American prohibition, a group in England and Scotland planned to ship 7,500 cases of whisky to North America, and hoped to make extraordinary profits. But they fell out and resorted to litigation between themselves.
Held: Sankey LJ . .
CitedRegazzoni v Sethia HL 1957
The House considered a mutual intention of both parties to perform a contract, which was not illegal on its face, but in a manner which was contrary to the law of the place where it was to be performed.
Held: Lord Reid said: ‘To my mind, the . .
CitedFisher v Bridges 1853
. .
CitedSpector v Ageda ChD 1971
. .
CitedMansouri v Singh CA 1986
The court declined to enforce a security founded on an illegal contract. . .
CitedGroup Josi v Walbrook Insurance Co. CA 1996
In the absence of fraud by the seller in presenting documents to the confirming bank seeking payment, the court will not restrain a bank from paying a letter of credit which is payable according to its terms, nor a beneficiary from seeking payment. . .
CitedBigos v Bousted 1951
The defendant sought to send his family abroad for his daughter’s health, but wanted to provide more money than would be allowed under exchange controls. He entered into an unlawful arrangement with the plaintiff an Italian national to get around . .

Cited by:
See alsoMahonia Ltd v JP Morgan Chase Bank ComC 30-Jul-2003
Enforceability of documentary credits – strike out of defence refused. . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 09 March 2021; Ref: scu.199819