A company has been granted a worldwide freezing order on the assets of a debtor who had put forward a “concocted case at trial”.
The case involved GML International Ltd & Others v Harfield (2020).
GML and the other claimants had brought proceedings to recover significant sums of money paid to Harfield, who resisted by arguing that the monies had been paid to him as part of a compensation agreement.
The trial judge found that the payments had been loans, which the claimants were entitled to recover.
He also awarded the claimants their costs on an indemnity basis because Harfield's evidence had been unreliable, he had deliberately tried to avoid his debt and he had subjected the second claimant to hostile and expensive litigation.awarded the claimants their costs on an indemnity basis because Harfield's evidence had been unreliable, he had deliberately tried to avoid his debt and he had subjected the second claimant to hostile and expensive litigation.
Harfield failed to pay the judgment debt, and attempts to contact him received no response.
The claimants submitted that a freezing injunction should be granted because Harfield had put forward a concocted case and failed to disclose his assets.
The court granted the application. It held that Harfield knew that he owed money but had concocted a defence to the claim. There was overwhelming evidence of a risk of dissipation of assets.
The judge's findings of dishonesty showed a wilful attempt by Harfield not to honour the judgment.
Furthermore, there were serious questions as to where he kept his money. Accordingly, a freezing injunction and disclosure order were granted.
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