Motorola Credit Corporation v Uzan and others (No 2): CA 12 Jun 2003

World-wide freezing orders had been made under the 1982 Act. The defendants were members of a Turkish family with substantial business interests in the telecommunications industry. In breach of orders made in the US some defendants had sought to hide their assets. They had failed to respond as required to orders to disclose their assest, and failed to attend for cross examination. Anti-suit orders had been made in Turkey. The question now arose as to whether they should be heard on appeal if they remained in contempt.
Held: The court will hear a person in contempt when his application challenges the basis of the order of which he is in contempt. The original orders here bordered on the creative, and the challenge should be allowed. As to the validity of the orders, there was no fraud of the severity of Duvalier, and no question of comity arose. The judge’s exercise of his discretion was to be revisited. Appeals allowed in part.
Lord Justice Thorpe, Lord Justice Potter And Lord Justice Tuckey
[2003] EWCA Civ 752, Times 19-Jun-2003, Gazette 28-Aug-2003, [2004] 1 WLR 113
Civil Jurisdiction and Judgments Act 1982 25, Supreme Court Act 1981 37(1)
England and Wales
CitedRepublic of Haiti v Duvalier CA 1989
The defendant had fled from Haiti with a large part of that country’s assets while in power. Proceedings were pending in France which gave no jurisdiction to grant a worldwide freezing or disclosure order. He had used a firm of English solicitors as . .
CitedHadkinson v Hadkinson CA 1952
The courts adopt an approach similar to that of the United States courts where there has been a significant contempt on the part of a party to litigation. Denning LJ said: ‘Those cases seem to me to point the way to the modern rule. It is a strong . .
CitedX Ltd v Morgan-Grampian (Publishers) Ltd HL 1990
In a case where a contemnor not only fails wilfully and contumaciously to comply with an order of the court but makes it clear that he will continue to defy the court’s authority if the order should be affirmed on appeal, the court must have a . .
CitedArab Monetary Fund v Hashim and Others CA 21-Mar-1994
It is wrong to take as a starting point the proposition that the court will not hear a party in contempt but then to ask if the instant case falls within an exception to that general rule. It is preferable to ask whether, in the circumstances of an . .
CitedThe ‘Messiniaki Tolmi’ CA 2-Jan-1981
While the general rule is that a Court will not hear an application for his own benefit by a person in contempt unless and until he has first purged his contempt, there is an established exception to that general rule where the purpose of the . .
CitedPoitrimol v France ECHR 23-Nov-1993
Hudoc Judgment (Merits and just satisfaction) Violation of Art. 6-1+6-3-c; Pecuniary damage – claim rejected; Non-pecuniary damage – claim rejected; Costs and expenses partial award – domestic proceedings; Costs . .
CitedAtlantic Capital Corporation v Burney; Atlantic Capital Corporation and Others v Johnson CA 15-Sep-1994
The person in contempt had failed to comply with a series of asset-tracing orders which ‘depended critically’ upon the rightfulness of a default judgment earlier obtained against him. The court did not prevent him challenging the basis of those . .
CitedIn Re Swaptronics Ltd ChD 24-Jul-1998
A party who was in contempt of court should not be debarred from continuing to take a proper part in a court action unless that contempt was serious enough seriously to interfere with the fair conduct of the trial. ‘The courts need powers of . .
CitedStott (Procurator Fiscal, Dunfermline) and Another v Brown PC 5-Dec-2000
The system under which the registered keeper of a vehicle was obliged to identify herself as the driver, and such admission was to be used subsequently as evidence against her on a charge of driving with excess alcohol, was not a breach of her right . .
CitedCredit Suisse Fides Trust SA v Cuoghi; Credit Suisse Fides Trust SA and Amhurst Brown Colombotti (a Firm) CA 11-Jun-1997
The claimant brought proceedings in Switzerland (a party to the Lugano Convention) against the defendant who was domiciled in England, alleging that he had conspired with one of the claimant’s employees to misappropriate some US$ 21 million. It was . .
CitedDenilauler v SNC Couchet Freres (Judgment) ECJ 21-May-1980
The courts of the place or, in any event, of the Contracting State, where the assets subject to the measures sought are located, are those best able to assess the circumstances which may lead to the grant or refusal of the measures sought or to the . .
CitedRosseel N V v Oriental Commercial Shipping Company (UK) Ltd 1990
The court discouraged the grant of ancillary relief where such grant would obstruct or hamper the management of the case by the primary court in another jurisdiction or give rise to a risk of conflicting, inconsistent or overlapping orders in other . .
CitedREFCO Capital Markets Ltd and Another v Eastern Trading Co, Credit Suisse (First Boston) Ltd and Another CA 17-Jun-1998
An application for Mareva relief was granted under s.25 where proceedings were pending in the US against Lebanese defendants arising out of futures transactions with respect of assets in England. On the application to discharge the order, the lower . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedHouse of Spring Gardens v Waite CA 1991
The principle of abuse of process is capable of applying where the relevant earlier proceedings have taken place before a foreign court (Ireland). In this case the defendants argued that the judgment obtained in Ireland had been obtained . .
CitedOwens Bank v Etoile Commerciale 1995
The principles of abuse of process may apply even though the relevant earlier proceedings have taken place before a foreign court. . .
CitedHenderson v Henderson 20-Jul-1843
Abuse of Process and Re-litigation
The court set down the principles to be applied in abuse of process cases, where a matter was raised again which should have been dealt with in earlier proceedings.
Sir James Wigram VC said: ‘In trying this question I believe I state the rule . .
CitedLocabail International Finance Ltd v Agroexport CA 1986
There is a general principle of the law as to injunctions that the court should not put itself in the position of making orders which it cannot enforce against the person or assets of a defendant. . .
CitedDerby and Co Ltd v Weldon (Nos 3 and 4) CA 1990
The plaintiff had obtained an asset freezing order against a defendant Panamanian Company, which now appealed saying that it was inappropriate to make such an order where the company had no assets in the jurisdiction.
Held: The appeal failed. . .
CitedVan Uden Maritime v Kommanditgesellschaft in Firma Deco-Line and others (Judgment) ECJ 17-Nov-1998
Applications under the Brussels Convention for Interim Measures were capable of being heard by courts notwithstanding a clause referring disputes under the contract in issue exclusively to arbitration. Even in the case of Article 24 of the Brussels . .
CitedAdams v Cape Industries plc CA 2-Jan-1990
Proper Use of Corporate Entity to Protect Owner
The defendant was an English company and head of a group engaged in mining asbestos in South Africa. A wholly owned English subsidiary was the worldwide marketing body, which protested the jurisdiction of the United States Federal District Court in . .
CitedWardle Fabrics Ltd v G Myristis Ltd 1984
A person against whom an order is made must obey it until it is discharged. . .
CitedMcC v Mullan; In re McC (A Minor) HL 1984
A statutory condition precluded magistrates from making the order they did unless a juvenile offender who was not legally represented had been refused legal aid, or had been informed of his right to apply for it but had refused or neglected to do . .
CitedBenham v United Kingdom ECHR 8-Feb-1995
Legal Aid was wrongfully refused where a tax or fine defaulter was liable to imprisonment, and the lack of a proper means enquiry, made imprisonment of poll tax defaulter unlawful. A poll tax defaulter had been wrongly committed to prison by . .
CitedArab Monetary Fund v Jawad Mahmoud Hashim; Salwa Al Rufaiee, etc CA 21-Mar-1997
When a person in contempt of court asks to be heard by the court before his contempt is purged, the preferable approach is to ask: ‘whether, in the circumstances of an individual case, the interests of justice are best served by hearing a party in . .
See AlsoMotorola Credit Corporation v Uzan and Others CA 26-Jun-2002
A world wide asset freezing order had been made. The defendants sought that it be set aside. Pending the hearing of their application, they sought also delay of their obligation to co-operate in providing full details of their finances.
Held: . .

Cited by:
CitedPolanski v Conde Nast Publications Ltd HL 10-Feb-2005
The claimant wished to pursue his claim for defamation against the defendant, but was reluctant to return to the UK to give evidence, fearing arrest and extradition to the US. He appealed refusal of permission to be interviewed on video tape. Held . .
CitedETI Euro Telecom International Nv v Republic of Bolivia and Another CA 28-Jul-2008
The parties were involved in an international investment dispute arbitration. An injunction had been sought to prevent repatriation of assets to Bolivia.
Held: The international system of arbitration was not subject to any national law and did . .

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Updated: 09 March 2021; Ref: scu.183396