Stephen has extensive experience in the field of commercial fraud acting for Claimants and for Defendants alike as well as for innocent third parties who find themselves caught up in a fraud or in proceedings arising from that fraud. He is known for his first rate legal mind (Legal 500 2017) and for being a very able and pugnacious litigator (Chambers and Partners 2018).
Stephen adopts a proactive and team based approach in connection with his commercial fraud work. He is regularly instructed on urgent interim relief applications, whether to freeze assets or preserve documents and property or to resist the making of such orders or to seek to have them set aside where obtained without notice. He has a deserved reputation as an excellent advocate who is particularly effective in injunctions and interim relief applications (Legal 500 2016).
Interim relief apart, a substantial part of Stephen’s practice is prosecuting and defending substantial commercial fraud matters through to trial. At any given time Stephen is instructed on a wide range of commercial fraud claims including common law claims in deceit and restitution, equitable claims for breach of trust and breach of fiduciary duty, accessory claims for knowing receipt and dishonest assistance that arise from such claims and economic tort claims for conspiracy and inducement to breach and similar. As claims in commercial fraud so often require, Stephen is tenacious in his approach, is bold and is technically very good (Chambers and Partners 2017).
Commercial Fraud Cases
Sample cases include:
I v B (2018) – currently acting for Claimant company in injunctive proceedings against former senior employee and co-conspirators in connection with misappropriation and misuse of confidential information.
P v D (2018) – currently acting for Defendants defending warranty claims brought on the basis of allegations of fraud with an asserted value of over £6 million.
A v J (2018) – currently advising the Claimant in connection with prospective proceedings arising out of the administration and liquidation of a limited company involving substantial claims under both the Insolvency Act for voidable preference and TUV and also claims for breach of duty by de jure and de facto directors.
E v J (2018) – currently acting for Claimant company in proceedings for breach of trust, breach of fiduciary duty and accessory claims against former nominee and investment manager in connection with the misappropriation and misuse of trust assets to a value of £2 million plus. Successful in obtaining and thereafter maintaining freezing and proprietary orders and Norwich Pharmacal relief.
Eden v Parker  EWHC 3302 (Ch) – acted for the Claimant in 3 week trial involving claims in deceit and breach of fiduciary duty by a member of an LLP arising out of a substantial property development.
Hy-Fly v Salisbury (2015) – acted for the Claimant in equitable fraud proceedings seeking to recover substantial sums that had been paid to the Defendant as deposit monies for the purchase and construction of commercial wind turbines which never materialised. Following trial and on the eve of judgement being handed down, favourable settlement terms were agreed.
VC v J (2015) – acted for the Claimant in proceedings against its former managing director for misuse of confidential information and breach of covenant claiming losses in excess of £1 million. The proceedings began with Anton Pillar and Freezing Order relief which was maintained on applications being made to set the same aside. Claim subsequently settled at mediation.