Cayman Islands > Dispute resolution
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Appleby welcomed Christopher Russell from Ogier, where he was litigation and insolvency head, and Peter McMaster QC joined from Serle Court. However, the firm lost Graeme Halkerston to Wilberforce Chambers. The practice represented Maan Al-Sanea in a high-profile multibillion-dollar fraud claim, involving 43 defendants; and acted for Zolfo Cooper, as liquidators of DD Growth Premium 2X Fund, who are seeking to claw back redemption payments made to investors at a time when the fund was insolvent. Andrew Bolton is global litigation and insolvency practice leader; and Jeremy Walton is Cayman litigation and insolvency practice group head. Contentious trusts expert Carlos de Serpa Pimentel and Nicolas Joseph are rated.
Maples and Calder's courtroom practice is 'excellent and its client service is terrific'. The team acted for Renova and for its principal, Viktor Vekselberg - one of Russia's richest and most prominent businessmen - as claimants in a shareholder dispute concerning the alleged misappropriation of world-famous brand name Fabergé. It also represented Orbita Capital Return Strategy in a clawback claim by Fairfield Sentry (in liquidation). Aristos Galatopoulos is team head; Colin McKie 'demonstrates an excellent grasp of the realities of litigation in the Cayman Islands'; and Mac Imrie, Matthew Crawford, and Martin Livingston are also key contacts.
Campbells has substantial experience acting for liquidators; regularly acts for investors in distressed funds; advises in complex, and often cross-border, trust disputes; and has a successful debt recovery practice. Highlights included representing Simon Appell and Gordon MacRae of Zolfo Cooper, as joint provisional liquidators of Arcapita Investment Holdings, and acting for MerchantBridge Holdings in a monetarily substantial shareholder dispute. Ross McDonough is litigation head; Alistair Walters is managing partner; and Shaun McCann and Guy Manning are also experienced practitioners.
Mourant Ozannes has 'fantastic client service and great depth of knowledge in the dispute resolution field'. The practice acted as Cayman Islands legal counsel for plaintiff AHAB in a fraud claim against Maan Al Sanea and his Saad Group of companies to recover $9.2bn. It also represented KPMG as receivers, appointed over four companies that own and operate the Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman Resort. The practice also has significant experience of fraud and asset tracing work. Team head Peter Hayden is a 'top-class litigator with an eye for detail'; Hector Robinson is an 'exceptionally smart operator when it comes to dealing with complex litigation'; and Simon Dickson has 'good depth of legal knowledge and advocacy skills'. Morven McMillan is noted for trust litigation.
Walkers continues to represent the First Defendant and seven related defendants, in defending a $9.2bn claim, marking the largest piece of litigation pending in the Cayman Islands. Sandie Corbett splits her time with the BVI office, and Diarmad Murray, Colette Wilkins, Neil Lupton and Lindsay Luttermann are also key contacts. Guy Locke, who returned to the Cayman office in 2012 from the firm's Hong Kong office, retired from the partnership but remains a consultant.
Conyers Dill & Pearman is 'practical, hardworking and knowledgeable'. The practice acted for a Russian Bank in respect of a $200m fraud claim being litigated in London and freezing orders sought in Cayman, BVI and Cyprus. Group head Nigel Meeson and counsel Fraser Hughes are 'top-flight lawyers'.
Ogier endured Christopher Russell leaving for Appleby and Shaun Folpp joining Mourant Ozannes' new BVI office, but welcomed Richard de Lacy QC as team head from 3 Stone Buildings. The practice acted for PricewaterhouseCoopers and Grant Thornton, as liquidators of Weavering Macro Fixed Income Fund, in obtaining a landmark judgment against the fund's directors for breach of duty. Rachael Reynolds is 'easy to work with and provides a consistently high quality of service'; Michael Makridakis, William Jones and Oliver Payne are experienced practitioners.
Solomon Harris provides 'sound advice'. The practice assisted the joint official liquidators of Bear Stearns High-Grade Structured Credit Strategies (Overseas) Fund and Bear Stearns High-Grade Structured Credit Strategies Enhanced Leverage (Overseas) Fund on various Cayman legal aspects of $1.6bn claims against former directors and investment managers. Laura Hatfield is department head. Sam Dawson has a growing profile in disputes relating to alternative investment structures. Dawson is 'extremely efficient and thorough'.
Harney Westwood & Riegels is 'energetic, responsive and effective'. The former team head Sarah Dobbyn joined Stuarts, Walker Hersant Attorneys-At-Law but XXIV Old Buildings barrister David Herbert arrived as practice group leader in November 2011 and associate Alexia Adda joined in April 2012 from Higgs & Johnson. Herbert is 'very knowledgeable and creative in the development of litigation strategy and has significant court experience across the Caribbean'. The team was instructed on behalf of the plaintiff Riad Al Sadik in relation to a $135m hedge fund dispute against Investcorp Bank BSC and five other defendants, marking one of the largest trials ever undertaken in the Financial Services Division of the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands. Senior associate Heather Neilson is 'effective'.
Higgs & Johnson 'deals with litigation very efficiently, with client service being a key focus'. The practice is Cayman counsel for the Madoff Trustee, advising on all Cayman matters arising in the liquidation of the estate and from Madoff's notorious Ponzi fraud. Team head Philip Boni's 'sensitive and wise counsel has rescued many from the snares of litigation', and Kate Palfrey is an 'energetic, ambitious and super-bright individual'. John Harris is also a key figure.
Offshore boutique law firm Stuarts, Walker Hersant Attorneys-At-Law welcomed Harney Westwood & Riegels's former team head Sarah Dobbyn as of counsel. The practice has developed a particular specialisation in distressed funds litigation and liquidation matters. It advised hfc/Contrarian Capital, as the second largest stakeholder in the Sphinx funds, in relation to representative proceedings concerning the 22 liquidations. Litigation head Anthony Akiwumi and senior counsel Richard Annette are recommended.