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David Russell QC and Stephen Doherty successful in DIFC Court of Appeal

After a long running dispute, the DIFC Court of Appeal has dismissed the claim in Massun v Mousi & Ors. Outer Temple members, David Russell QC and Stephen Doherty, acted for the Second and Third Defendants.

After a long running dispute, the DIFC Court of Appeal has dismissed the claim in Massun v Mousi & Ors. Outer Temple members, David Russell QC and Stephen Doherty, acted for the Second and Third Defendants.

The Claimant had claimed to have a beneficial interest in the shares of certain companies at the top of two corporate structures. Two large assets were held in these corporate structures, registered to companies at the bottom of the structures. The Claimant claimed that the companies had tried to misappropriate these assets, claims denied by the Defendants.

The claim was originally filed in Cyprus with the Claimant obtaining a freezing order in the DIFC Court to support those proceedings. However the Cyprus Court dismissed the claim, finding it had no jurisdiction. The Claimant then brought the claim in the DIFC Court, bringing in another Defendant; a DIFC company. Judgment was issued in December 2021 in Kaamil v Kaawa & ORs [2020] CFI 032

The DIFC Court applied the approach of the UK Supreme Court in Marex Financial Ltd v Sevilleja [2020] UKSC 31 where if a company suffers loss, the loss suffered by their shareholder as a result in the reduction in value of that shareholding is not a loss which is recognised by law. These proceedings are the only reported instance of the application in the DIFC Courts of the reflective loss principle following this decision in Marex.

The Court of Appeal allowed the five Defendants to appeal this decision and, as a result, the claim was dismissed and the freezing injunctions set aside.

David Russell QC and Alastair Tomson appeared for the Second Defendant, instructed by Tyne Hugo of BSA Ahmad Bin Hezeem & Associates LLP.

Tom Montagu-Smith QC of 3 Verulam Buildings and Stephen Doherty of Outer Temple Chambers appeared for the Third Defendant, instructed by Abdulla Al Awadi, Advocates.

Find out more about the case

Read the full judgment in Massun v Mousi and ors [2022] DIFC CA 004, here.

Find out more

David Russell QC commenced legal practice in 1974. He is admitted to practise in Australia, England and Wales (Lincoln’s Inn), the Courts of the Dubai International Financial Centre, New York (as a Legal Consultant), New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.

He currently practises in Dubai, London, and Abu Dhabi (Outer Temple Chambers), Sydney (Ground Floor Wentworth Chambers) and Brisbane (Sir Harry Gibbs Chambers). He has acted for Commonwealth and State Governments as well as individuals and corporations. David was President of the Taxation Institute of Australia from 1993 to 1995, and of the Asia Oceania Tax Consultants’ Association from 1996 to 2000.

To find out more, contact Matt Sale +44 (0)20 7427 4910 for a confidential discussion.


Stephen Doherty practises commercial litigation, with a focus on international dispute resolution and arbitrationpensions, and financial services law. He is ranked as a Tier 1 Junior by the Legal 500 (The English Bar: Commercial in the Middle East) and as an “Up and Coming” Junior Chambers & Partners Global 2022.

His international practice is predominantly based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and the wider GCC region. In the past twelve months Stephen has been instructed as sole counsel in a number of multi-million dollar arbitrations, including in the fields of construction, property and shareholder disputes. He has appeared in arbitrations conducted under a number of institutional rules, including the ICC, DIAC, DIFC-LCIA and ADCCAC. Stephen also regularly appears in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) Courts across a number of areas, including applications for interim injunctive and Mareva relief, financial services disputes, employment disputes, and jurisdictional challenges. Stephen is also currently instructed in relation to a Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) regulatory investigation.

To find out more, contact Matt Sale +44 (0)20 7427 4910 for a confidential discussion.

News, International 2 Aug, 2022

Authors

David Russell QC

Call: 1977 (Australia) Silk: 1986

Stephen Doherty

Call: 2013

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