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Privy Council judgment

Andrew McLeod has acted for the respondent in a Privy Council appeal from the British Virgin Islands about ancillary disclosure provisions in a freezing order.

On 20 May 2019, the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council gave judgment in Emmerson International Corp v Renova Holding Ltd [2019] UKPC 24, having heard the appeal from the Court of Appeal of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court on an expedited basis on 1 May 2019.

The issue before the Board was whether a disclosure order ancillary to a freezing injunction constituted an “injunction” for the purposes of section 30(4)(ii) of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (Virgin Islands) Act. That section provides for an appeal as of right in any case where an injunction is granted or refused. Identical provisions regulate appeals in jurisdictions across the eastern Caribbean and in the Cayman Islands.

Giving the Board’s advice, Lord Sales held that the ancillary disclosure provisions were “inherent and necessary ingredients of the operative part of the freezing order” and therefore was an “injunction” for the purposes of section 30(4)(ii). Accordingly, the appellant did not require leave to appeal.

The decision suggests that an appeal as of right will lie against the grant or refusal of any ancillary relief which is connected to the operative injunctive effect of a freezing order.

Andrew acted for Renova Holding Limited, led by Paul McGrath QC (of Essex Court) and with Arabella di Iorio (of Agon Litigation) and Michael Bolding (of Brick Court Chambers), while on secondment to Agon Litigation in the British Virgin Islands.

The judgment is available on the Privy Council’s website and via BAILII.