Ewan Mcquater KC > Chambers of Ewan McQuater KC and Adrian Beltrami KC > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Chambers of Ewan McQuater KC and Adrian Beltrami KC
3 Verulam Buildings
GRAY'S INN
LONDON
WC1R 5NT
England
Ewan Mcquater photo

Position

Barrister specialising in commercial work in particular international and domestic banking and finance, commercial fraud and insolvency/corporate restructuring cases include: Queen’s Moat Houses v Capital IRG [2004]; Morgan Grenfell v Arrows [2004]; Morris v Bank of America [2003]; Kensington v Congo [2003]; Phillips v Brewin Dolphin [2001]; State of Brunei v Prince Jefri Bolkiah [2000]; ICIC v Adham [1998]; BBL v Eagle Star [1995]; Re Arrows Limited [1992].

Career

Called 1985; publications: assistant editor of the ‘Encyclopaedia of Banking Law’ since 1987.

Languages

French.

Education

Cambridge University (MA Hons).

Lawyer Rankings

Middle East: The English Bar > Commercial

(Leading silks)Ranked: Tier 2

Ewan McQuater QC3 Verulam BuildingsEwan is highly intelligent and very experienced.  He is able to read the court very well, and adapts his style accordingly.  He is very calm and user friendly.’

3 Verulam Buildings has particular expertise in banking and finance disputes and international arbitration in the Middle East. Andrew Onslow QC represented a number of the defendants in the London leg of the high-profile SKAT v Solo Capital Partners dispute concerning “cum-ex trading” alleged to be a fraud by the Danish tax authorities; the matter also featured large-scale proceedings in the DIFC. In Abu Dhabi, Ewan Mcquater QC is leading the counsel team, which includes David Quest QC among others, for the lenders in NMC Healthcare Ltd v Dubai Islamic Bank PJSC, the largest insolvency in the region. Hodge Malek QC is another standout name and acted for an Iranian petrochemical company in a $70 million banking fraud claim. The set welcomes the arrival of Tom Montagu-Smith QC, who joined in 2021 from XXIV Old Buildings.

London Bar > Insolvency

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 2

Ewan McQuater KC3 Verulam Buildings ‘Very intelligent and insightful, he knows what will appeal to a judge and how best to approach an application or case with a view to achieving the client’s objectives and getting a good result.’

London Bar > International arbitration: counsel

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 2

Ewan McQuater KC3 Verulam Buildings ‘He has a commanding presence before a tribunal (without being bombastic or pushy) — he speaks calmly and with authority. He has an excellent style of cross examination that works with both factual expert witnesses. Brisk and efficient, cutting to the heart of the case.’

London Bar > Banking and finance (including consumer credit)

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 1

Ewan McQuater KC3 Verulam BuildingsA titan in this area.

3 Verulam Buildings is ‘a great set for banking disputes‘ with expertise in ‘traditional finance to crypto and everything in between‘. Clients commend its ‘wealth of talented barristers at all levels who all deliver top quality work product and excellent service’. The set’s silks and juniors regularly act on some of the financial market’s defining cases, with a recent example including Vatche Manoukian v Societe Generale Banque Liban,  in which Ian Wilson KC  and Rebecca Zaman  are representing Société Générale Banque Liban and Bank Audi in a significant dispute concerning access to funds denominated in US dollars held by Lebanese banks that, owing to the shortage of hard currency in the jurisdiction, Lebanese banks are not permitting to be withdrawn. A team including Ewan McQuater KC and David Quest KC is advising Dubai Islamic Bank  and Noor Bank,  in NMC Healthcare Limited v Dubai Islamic Bank PJSC and Noor Bank PJSC before the Abu Dhabi Global Markets courts, arising from the insolvency of NMC Healthcare, the Middle East’s largest private healthcare provider.

London Bar > Commercial litigation

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 1

Ewan McQuater KC3 Verulam Buildings ‘Superb and compelling advocacy.’

3 Verulam Buildings ‘continues to be a blue ribbon set with many proven and talented silks and juniors of various ranges of experience‘. The set’s recent investments, particularly at the junior end, have not gone unnoticed, having ‘materially improved the offering across the range of expertise needed for major international litigation‘. Major recent mandates include Ewan McQuater KC leading Adam Kramer KC and Hannah Glover  on behalf of Vodafone in Phones4U Ltd (in administration) v EE, Vodafone UK and others, in which Phones 4U’s administrators claim that Vodafone conspired with other mobile network operators to stop supplying Phones 4U, sinking the business. Multiple members, including Ali Malek KC, Matthew Hardwick KC, Andrew Onslow KC, David Head KC and George McPherson are representing the defendants in the epic SKAT (The Danish Customs & Tax Administration) v Solo Capital Partners LLP, concerning “cum-ex” trading of Danish shares by a Dubai-based hedge fund which the Danish authorities allege to be a tax fraud.

London Bar > Fraud: civil

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 1

Ewan McQuater KC3 Verulam Buildings ‘An intellectual powerhouse who absorbs complex papers and evidence quickly.’

3 Verulam Buildings has an ‘excellent choice of specialist barristers at different levels mostly focusing on complex commercial work and white-collar complex fraud cases and crime‘. The set’s members regularly feature on the market’s largest fraud claims, including thirteen who were involved SKAT v Solo Capital Partners, in which the Danish tax authority is alleging fraud against multiple defendants for withholding tax under double taxation treaties. David Quest KC and Philip Hinks acted for the defendants in State Bank of Qatar v Banque Havilland and Bolelyy, a multi-billion-dollar fraud claim that ultimately settled before trial, concerning an alleged conspiracy to sabotage the Qatari economy. In Ritchie Capital Management LLC v General Electric Company, Adrian Beltrami KC, Ewan McQuater KC and James McWilliams  successfully acted for General Electric in a complex multi-jurisdiction dispute arising out the US$3.6bn Petters Group Worldwide ponzi scheme, whose American eponymous founder Tom Petters is serving a five-decade federal prison sentence for fraud offences.

Asia Pacific - The English Bar > Commercial

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 1

Ewan McQuater KC – 3 Verulam BuildingsVery good advocate and strategist.  Excellent legal analysis.’

The ‘thoroughly efficient3 Verulam Buildings remains a recognised and prestigious set in a wide variety of commercial law practice areas. Members of chambers have consistently been instructed on leading commercial and investment arbitrations, whilst developing an investment treaty practice within Asia Pacific regions. One standout case for the chambers was International Petroleum Investment Company; Aabar Investments v 1 Malaysia Development Berhad; Ministry of Finance Inc, Malaysia whereby Ewan Mcquater KC handled the London leg of the litigation regarding the 1MDB scandal in Malaysia, relating to the alleged looting of billions of US dollars from a sovereign wealth fund by, inter alia, the country’s former prime minister Najib Razak. Saima Hanif KC has an established practice acting for financial institutions and individuals around banking and finance regulation. Richard Salter’s practice covers all aspects of commercial litigation and arbitration, with specialisms including banking, corporate finance and financial services. Recent arrivals include Can Yeginsu who has joined from 4 New Square and Damien Walker joining from Essex Court Chambers.

The English Bar Offshore > The English Bar Offshore

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 1

Ewan McQuater KC3 Verulam BuildingsStrong intellect, understanding of what is important and likely to turn the outcome of a case, good grasp of the detail and fantastic advocacy skills.’