HomeCase studiesPrivate clientsCommercial litigation and dispute resolutionObtaining Norwich Pharmacal Orders to help the victim of a circa £30 million wine fraud recover his losses

Why the client needed our help

Our client, a private individual, had been the victim of a sophisticated “wine fraud” with an estimated value of circa £30 million. Upon discovering that he had been the victim of fraud, he contacted us for urgent assistance.

How we helped

We immediately began work preparing an application for a freezing order supported by voluminous evidence obtained by our professional agents. However, prior to the application being issued, it became apparent that one victim of the fraud had recently obtained a worldwide freezing order against the same defendants. In the circumstances, we turned our attention to issuing Norwich Pharmacal Orders to obtain further information to assist our client in understanding what had happened to both his “investment” and / or the wine that had purportedly been purchased and stored on his behalf.

We obtained two Norwich Pharmacal Orders; one against a bank who held some of the proceeds of our client’s “investment”; the other against a storage facility which held part of the wine purchased on our client’s behalf.

The outcome

Having reviewed the information and documentation provided by each party, our client was able to assert a positive proprietary trust claim in respect of certain monies and goods resulting in an enhanced recovery for him ahead of the other unsecured creditors. If it wasn’t for our swift actions, it was likely that the provisional liquidator would have sold our client’s property and he would not have been able to recover against those assets.

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