Professional practice

Anna Dilnot has a broad commercial and commercial Chancery practice focusing on civil fraud, international arbitration and substantial multi-jurisdiction disputes.

She is a former commercial litigation solicitor, qualifying in 2002 with Stephenson Harwood and later becoming a solicitor advocate before being called to the Bar in 2008.

As well as acting as junior counsel in disputes of very substantial value, Anna often appears as sole counsel in both the High Court and arbitration and has substantial experience in applications for interim relief.

 

 

What others say

Anna is recommended as a Leading Junior in both Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500 for both Commercial Dispute Resolution and Civil Fraud. Comments include:
“A dynamic and experienced junior whom sources regard as ‘going places’.”
“Very intelligent and quick to get to the issues. A real fighter and someone to be trusted with serious cases”.
“Identified as an impressive fraud junior by both peers and solicitors”, “particularly noted for her handling of multi-jurisdiction cases”.
“Hardworking, clever and good on her feet.”
“Solicitors rank her very highly; she’s a good lawyer and strong advocate who fits into a team and has no grandeur or pomposity”.
“Her preparation is extremely thorough and she has that rare ability to thoroughly consider the material, and identify and focus quickly on the key issues.”
“Impresses interviewees with the strength of her written work”.
In 2013 Anna was chosen by Chambers and Partners as one of its ten ‘Stars at the Bar’ of 5 years’ call and under.

In October 2009 Anna was chosen by Legal Week as part of its ‘stars of the bar’ article, as a “highly commended up and coming barrister”.

Examples of recent cases

Anna has acted for Prince Jefri Bolkiah since 2005 as both solicitor and barrister in his long running former dispute with Brunei. Other recent work includes:

London Steam Ship Owners Mutual Insurance Association Ltd v (1) Spain and (2) France (The Prestige) [2015] EWCA Civ 333: Anna represented Spain and France in resisting s.66 applications to enforce negative declarations granted in Awards made against them in relation to their attempts to seek compensation for losses of over €4 billion caused by the ecological disaster arising out of the sinking of the M/T Prestige in 2002. Sovereign immunity, conflicts of laws, arbitrability, the Judgments Regulation and ss.67/72 of the Arbitration Act 1996.

Kazakhstan Kagazy Plc v (1) Zhunus (2) Arip [2015] EWHC 404 (Comm) and [2015] EWHC 996 (Comm): Anna represents defendants in a substantial and hard-fought fraud and conspiracy claim brought by KK Plc against its former directors. The case has resulted in a series of recent decisions by the Commercial Court.

Alliance Bank JSC v (1) Zhuns (2) Arip [2015] EWHC 714 (Comm): Anna represented the defendants in a $300 million fraud and conspiracy claim brought by Alliance Bank in respect of a series of outstanding loans. Defendants have obtained the discharge of the freezing and proprietary injunctions granted to Alliance and the English Court has declined jurisdiction for want of a seriously arguable case.

RP Explorer Master Fund v Malhotra & Ors [2014] EWHC 4170 (Comm): Anna acts for an investment fund in a substantial fraud and conspiracy claim against multiple defendants in several jurisdictions. By this judgment the Court dismissed an application to strike out for abuse of process and res judicata.

St Christopher School (Letchworth) Ltd v Schymanski [2014] EWHC 2573 (QB): During a two-week High Court trial Anna, acting as sole advocate, successfully defended the school against allegations of racial discrimination, bullying and breaches of the school’s duty of care. The school and each member of staff were fully exonerated.

Burger King Corporation v King Franchises Ltd [2013] EWHC 1761 (Comm): Anna represented Burger King in obtaining declaratory relief and mandatory final injunctions against its former Cypriot franchisee.

Civil fraud & asset tracing

Anna has over the past 12 years obtained substantial experience of domestic and international commercial fraud and related contempt proceedings. She has particular experience (both alone and as junior) of seeking and resisting applications for freezing and proprietary relief, including in support of arbitrations. She also has experience of third party disclosure, Norwich Pharmacal and restraint orders.

Further, Anna advises in relation to the Bribery Act 2010 and related FCPA issues. Examples of decisions and instructions include:

Kazakhstan Kagazy Plc v (1) Zhunus (2) Arip [2015] EWHC 404 (Comm) and [2015] EWHC 996 (Comm): Anna represents defendants in a substantial and hard-fought fraud and conspiracy claim brought by KK Plc against its former directors. The case has resulted in a series of recent decisions by the Commercial Court.

Alliance Bank JSC v (1) Zhuns (2) Arip [2015] EWHC 714 (Comm): Anna represented the defendants in a $300 million fraud and conspiracy claim brought by Alliance Bank in respect of a series of outstanding loans.

Defendants have obtained the discharge of the freezing and proprietary injunctions granted to Alliance and the English Court has declined jurisdiction for want of a seriously arguable case.

Kazatomprom v Dzhakishev & Ors [2015]:

Anna acts for the state atomic agency of Kazakhstan in its claims proceeding in the BVI against its former directors and others in respect of alleged diversion of interests in uranium assets (with David Foxton QC).

RP Explorer Master Fund –v- Malhotra & Ors [2014] EWHC 4170 (Comm):

Anna is representing a Cayman investment fund in its pursuit of various individuals (in England, Dubai, Singapore and India) and a European bank for deceit and conspiracy in respect of the issue of $200 million in global depository receipts by an Indian company and listed on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange. (With Paul McGrath QC)

Accident Exchange –v- Autofocus & Ors (2015):

Anna is representing Accident Exchange in what has been described as the largest ever fraud on the civil justice system where thousands of expert reports containing false information were deployed in legal proceedings against Accident Exchange and other credit hire providers. (With Paul McGrath QC)

Irving Picard (Trustee of BLMIS)-v- (1) Kingate Management Ltd (2) FIM Ltd & Ors (2014):

Anna is defending parties in claims brought by the Liquidator of Bernard L Madoff Securities LLC and the Liquidator of two substantial Bermudan hedge funds. The proceedings in London and New York involve allegations of fraud and knowing receipt against Anna’s clients. (With Robert Miles QC)

Nelgado –v- Sanadiradze (2014):

Anna is pursuing final anti-suit relief on behalf of Nelgado (interim relief already granted) and defending claims in duress and the tort of intimidation.

Kirk v Kirk (2013):

Anna acted for a well-known businessman in respect of claims for fraudulent misrepresentation and breach of fiduciary duty made by his former wife arising out of the collapse of a South African Ponzi scheme. Settled close to trial.

Jennington International & KasGold -v- Assaubayev & Ors:

Instructed to advise upon and represent corporate defendants in respect of search and freezing orders made in relation to an alleged fraud involving debt raised on the London Stock Exchange.

UK public authorities -v- J:

Anna has successfully acted as sole advocate for various UK public authorities seeking to recover funds

misappropriated by senior employees. Freezing orders and Norwich Pharmacal relief.

(1) The State of Brunei Darussalam (2) the Brunei Investment Agency v HRH Prince Jefri Bolkiah [2008] EWHC 1247 (Ch):

Committal proceedings for alleged breaches of freezing and disclosure orders and the submission of evidence without an honest belief in its truth (ongoing). (With James Lewis QC and David Lord QC)

The State of Brunei Darussalam (2) the Brunei Investment Agency v HRH Prince Jefri Bolkiah [2008] EWHC 1248 (Ch):

Successful application for permission to cross-examine the Sultan of Brunei involving questions of sovereign immunity.

In the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands: (1) the State of Brunei Darussalam (2) the Brunei Investment Agency v (1) Sol Properties, Inc (2) HRH Prince Jefri Bolkiah [2008]:

Application for rectification of the share register of a Cayman Islands incorporated company; involved the question of whether a non money judgment could be enforced at common law; resulted in a change in the common law as applied in the Cayman Islands.

The State of Brunei Darussalam v Fidelis Nominees & Ors

[2008] JRC 152: application to enforce a non-money judgment in Jersey. The case resulted in the common law, as applied in Jersey, being changed to allow enforcement.

HRH Prince Jefri Bolkiah v (1) the State of Brunei Darussalam & Ors [2007] UKPC 63:

specific performance; summary judgment; collateral contract; misrepresentation and estoppel. (With Joe Smouha QC and James Lewis QC)

HRH Prince Jefri Bolkiah v (1) the State of Brunei Darussalam & Ors [2007] UKPC 62:

application for recusal of trial judge;apparent bias; right to fair trial before an independent and impartial tribunal.

Amedeo Hotels Ltd Partnership v Faith Zaman & Ors [2007] EWHC 295 (Comm):

alleged breach of fiduciary duty, negligence and misappropriation of assets; freezing orders obtained under s.25 Civil Jurisdiction and Judgments Act 1982.

Westminster City Council v Dame Shirley Porter (English and Jersey courts) [2004-5]:

asset tracing; sham trust; freezing orders; third party disclosure orders; receivership and gagging orders. (With Paul McGrath QC and Christopher Pymont QC)

Commercial Dispute Resolution

Anna is an experienced commercial litigator and acts and advises in relation to a wide range of commercial disputes. She is regularly instructed to appear both alone and with leading counsel. Anna also has substantial experience of seeking and resisting applications for interim relief, including freezing orders, quia timet injunctions and applications in respect of contractual restrictive covenants.

Recent decisions and examples of work include:

London Steam Ship Owners Mutual Insurance Association v (1) Spain and (2) France (the Prestige) [2013] EWHC 3188 (Comm) and [2015] EWCA Civ 333:

Anna represented Spain and France at first instance and on appeal in resisting s.66 applications to enforce negative declarations granted in Awards made against them in relation to their attempts to seek compensation for losses of over €4 billion caused by the ecological disaster arising out of the sinking of the M/T Prestige in 2002. Sovereign immunity, conflicts of laws, arbitrability, the Judgments Regulation and ss.67/72 of the Arbitration Act 1996. (With Joe Smouha QC)

Kazakhstan Kagazy Plc v (1) Zhunus (2) Arip [2015] EWHC 404 (Comm) and [2015] EWHC 996 (Comm): Anna represents defendants in a substantial and hard-fought fraud and conspiracy claim brought by KK Plc against its former directors. The case has resulted in a series of recent decisions by the Commercial Court.

Alliance Bank JSC v (1) Zhuns (2) Arip [2015] EWHC 714 (Comm): Anna represented the defendants in a $300 million fraud and conspiracy claim brought by Alliance Bank in respect of a series of outstanding loans. Defendants have obtained the discharge of the freezing and proprietary injunctions granted to Alliance and the English Court has declined jurisdiction for want of a seriously arguable case.

St Christopher School (Letchworth) Ltd v Schymanski [2014] EWHC 2573 (QB):

During a two week High Court trial Anna, acting as sole advocate, successfully defended the school against

allegations of racial discrimination and bullying and failures in the school’s duty of care. The school and each member of staff was fully exonerated.

RP Explorer Master Fund -v- (1) R Chilukuri (2) Spice International Ltd [2013] EWCA Civ 1307:

Anna represented a Cayman investment fund in a dispute concerning global depository receipts issued on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange. The appeal concerned the correct approach to share valuation and, in particular, the DCF valuation method. The first instance decision dealing with additional issues of breach of contract and construction is at [2013] EWHC 103 (Ch). (With David Lord QC and later Jeffrey Gruder QC)

Separately, Anna represents RP Explorer in its professional negligence claim against its former solicitors and, further, in a claim against the promoters of an Indian energy group for conspiracy and deceit in relation to RP’s investment of $75 million in GDRs: see RP Explorer Master Fund v Malhotra & Ors [2014] EWHC 4170 (Comm) re abuse of process and res judicata.

Burger King Corp v (1) Laser Investment Group Plc and (2) King Franchises Ltd [2013] EWHC (Comm):

Anna appeared for Burger King and obtained summary judgment, including various declarations as to the validity of a contractual termination and permanent injunctions, against Burger King’s former Cypriot Franchisee.

BNE –v- Greatline Developments [2013]:

Anna represented a commercial property agent in its attempt to enforce a profit share agreement against a property developer. The case involved several allegations of forgery against the developer. After a full seven-day

trial in December 2013, the matter settled.

Independent Trustee Services Ltd-v- (1) GP Noble Trustees Ltd and Ors (2) Susan Morris [2012] EWCA Civ 195:

A decision on when the ‘purchaser aspect’ of the bona fide purchaser defence is to be assessed; rescission; setting aside of a consent order. The Supreme Court gave permission to appeal but the matter settled at an advanced stage. (With Andrew Twigger QC and James Lewis QC)

AJ Crane Ltd –v- BP (Caspian Sea) Ltd:

Anna acted for a supplier of cranes in a dispute with BP concerning the provision of substantial amounts of equipment for an energy project in Azerbaijan (recently settled). The case involved FCPA issues.

Commercial chancery disputes

Many of Anna’s cases are of a Commercial Chancery nature involving issues related to fiduciary duties and power, fraud, company and partnership law, trusts and property.

Alliance Bank JSC v (1) Zhuns (2) Arip [2015] EWHC 714 (Comm): Anna represented the defendants in a $300 million fraud and conspiracy claim brought by Alliance Bank in respect of a series of outstanding loans. Defendants have obtained the discharge of the freezing and proprietary injunctions granted to Alliance and the English Court has declined jurisdiction for want of a seriously arguable case.

Irving Picard (Trustee of BLMIS)-v- (1) Kingate Management Ltd (2) FIM Ltd & Ors [2014]:

Anna is defending parties in claims brought by the Liquidator of Bernard L Madoff Securities LLC and the Liquidator of two substantial Bermudan hedge funds. The proceedings in London and New York involve allegations of fraud and knowing receipt against Anna’s clients. (With Robert Miles QC)

RP Explorer Master Fund -v- (1) R Chilukuri (2) Spice International Ltd [2013] EWCA Civ 1307:

Anna represented a Cayman investment fund in a dispute concerning global depository receipts issued on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange. The appeal concerned the correct approach to share valuation and, in particular, the DCF valuation method. The first instance decision dealing with additional issues of breach of contract and construction is at [2013] EWHC 103 (Ch). (With David Lord QC and later Jeffrey Gruder QC)

BNE –v- Greatline Developments [2013]:

Anna represented a commercial property agent in its attempt to enforce a profit share agreement against a property developer. The case involved several allegations of forgery against the developer. After a full seven-day

trial in December 2013, the matter settled.

Independent Trustee Services Ltd-v- (1) GP Noble Trustees Ltd and Ors (2) Susan Morris [2012] EWCA Civ 195:

A decision on when the ‘purchaser aspect’ of the bona fide purchaser defence is to be assessed; rescission; setting aside of a consent order. The Supreme Court gave permission to appeal but the matter settled at an advanced stage. (With Andrew Twigger QC and James Lewis QC)

Rookledge –v- (1) Topological Systems Ltd (2) Tomassi [2012] Ch D (CR Baister):

Hard fought s.994 (unfair prejudice) proceedings. Anna successfully defended the petition at trial.

Liquidators of Connor Williams Ltd v Williams & Ors [2013]:

Anna defended misfeasance and negligence proceedings brought against a director of a substantial insolvent corporate group.

Company & insolvency law

Anna has experience of most types of company and corporate and personal insolvency applications, including obtaining injunctions to prevent the presentation of winding up petitions.

Rookledge –v- (1) Topological Systems Ltd (2) Tomassi [2012] Ch D (CR Baister):

Hard fought s.994 (unfair prejudice) proceedings. Anna successfully defended the petition at trial.

Liquidators of Connor Williams Ltd v Williams & Ors [2013]:

Anna defended misfeasance and negligence proceedings brought against a director of a substantial insolvent corporate group.

Irving Picard (Trustee of BLMIS)-v- (1) Kingate Management Ltd (2) FIM Ltd & Ors [2013]: (see description above)

CHRS Ltd (In Liquidation) -v- (1) Kirby (2) Kirby [2010]:

Anna successfully acted for the Liquidator in proceedings for specific performance of a settlement agreement and declarations as to the validity of the Liquidator’s security over the Defendant’s beneficial interest in real property.

Conflict of laws & private international law

London Steam Ship Owners Mutual Insurance Association v (1) Spain and (2) France (the Prestige) [2013] EWHC 3188 (Comm) and [2013] EWHC 2840 (Comm):

Anna represents France and Spain in resisting s.66 applications to enforce Awards made against them so as to block their attempts to seek compensation for losses in excess of €4 billion caused by the ecological disaster arising out of the sinking of the M/T Prestige in 2002. The case involves questions of the classification of causes of action/issues from the perspective of English private international law as well as the enforcement regime under the Judgments Regulation. Currently on appeal. (With Joe Smouha QC)

Energy & natural resources

Kazatomprom v Dzhakishev & Ors [2015]:

Anna acts for the state atomic agency of Kazakhstan in its claims proceeding in the BVI against its former directors and others in respect of alleged diversion of interests in uranium assets.

AJ Crane Ltd –v- BP (Caspian Sea) Ltd [2013]:

Anna acted for a supplier of cranes in a dispute with BP concerning the provision of substantial amounts of equipment for an energy project in Azerbaijan (settled). The case involved FCPA issues.

LCIA arbitration [2012]:

Anna acted as sole advocate in a two week arbitration representing a seller of wafers for photovoltaic panels in a dispute relating to a long-term ‘take or pay’ contract. She obtained an Award of circa $13 million for her client.

LCIA arbitration [2010]:

 Anna acted for an international energy commodity trader in an LCIA international commercial arbitration concerning an oil pipeline in Ghana (settled).

Financial Markets

RP Explorer Master Fund -v- (1) R Chilukuri (2) Spice International Ltd [2013] EWHC 103 (Ch):

Anna successfully represented a Cayman hedge fund in a dispute concerning global depository receipts issued on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange. Her client has been awarded damages in excess of US$80 million.
(With David Lord QC)

Irving Picard (Trustee of BLMIS) -v- (1) Kingate Management Ltd (2) FIM Ltd & Ors [2013]:

Anna is defending parties in claims brought by the Liquidator of Bernard L Madoff Securities LLC and the Liquidator of two substantial Bermudan hedge funds. The Bermudan aspect of the case concerns the structural aspect of two hedge funds, restitution, constructive trusts as well as allegations of professional negligence against financial advisors. (With Robert Miles QC)

Interest rate swap litigation (various):

Anna is currently acting for various businesses which have brought claims in respect of the alleged mis-selling of interest rate swap hedging products.

Anna has advised banks and others on a number of disputes concerning FOREX trading, breaches of the ISDA Master Agreement and termination as well as the construction of contracts governing futures and interest rate swaps. Further, a substantial part of her fraud work has involved the operation of Cayman and BVI hedge funds.

Insolvency

Anna has experience of most types of company and corporate and personal insolvency applications, including obtaining injunctions to prevent the presentation of winding up petitions.

Rookledge –v- (1) Topological Systems Ltd (2) Tomassi [2012] Ch D (CR Baister):

 Hard fought s.994 (unfair prejudice) proceedings. Anna successfully defended the petition at trial.

Liquidators of Connor Williams Ltd v Williams & Ors [2013]:

Anna defended misfeasance and negligence proceedings brought against a director of a substantial insolvent corporate group.

Irving Picard (Trustee of BLMIS)-v- (1) Kingate Management Ltd (2) FIM Ltd & Ors [2013]: (see description above)

CHRS Ltd (In Liquidation) -v- (1) Kirby (2) Kirby [2010]:

Anna successfully acted for the Liquidator in proceedings for specific performance of a settlement agreement and declarations as to the validity of the Liquidator’s security over the Defendant’s beneficial interest in real property.

International Arbitration

Anna advises and acts in a wide range or arbitral proceedings conducted both domestically and internationally, both alone and as junior counsel. She also has experience of seeking injunctive relief pursuant to s.44 of the 1996 Act, enforcing or resisting the enforcement of arbitral awards and appeals to the High Court pursuant to ss.68 and 69. She also has experience of applications to appoint and remove arbitrators. Recent examples of cases include:

London Steam Ship Owners Mutual Insurance Association v (1) Spain and (2) France (the Prestige) [2013] EWHC 3188 (Comm) and [2013] EWHC 2840 (Comm):

Anna represents France and Spain in resisting s.66 applications to enforce Awards made against them so as to block their attempts to seek compensation for losses in excess of €4 billion caused by the ecological disaster arising out of the sinking of the M/T Prestige in 2002. The case involves questions of sovereign immunity, conflicts of laws, arbitrability, discretion under s.66, the Judgments Regulation and ss.67/72 of the Arbitration Act 1996. Currently on appeal (With Joe Smouha QC)

SIAC arbitration [2013]:

Anna defended a Delaware company and a director and shareholder of that company in a contract and
shareholder dispute with a substantial Indian co-operative. The matter concerns a prospective phosphorus rock off-take agreement in relation to one or more Australian mines.

Ad hoc arbitration [2013]:

Anna acted for a wealthy individual in a dispute related to the proposed demolition of a valuable London
property. Damages were awarded to Anna’s client although permanent injunctions were refused. Anna also obtained interim relief pursuant to s.44. (With Christopher Moger QC)

LCIA arbitration [2012]:

Anna acted as sole advocate in a two week arbitration representing a seller of wafers for photovoltaic panels in a dispute relating to a long-term ‘take or pay’ contract. She obtained an Award of circa $13 million for her client.

LCIA arbitration (Dubai) [2012]:

Anna acted for a large international law firm in a partnership dispute (settled). (With Michael Swainston QC)

LCIA arbitration [2010]:

Anna acted for an international energy commodity trader in an LCIA international commercial arbitration
concerning an oil pipeline in Ghana (settled).

LCIA arbitration [2009-2010]:

Anna acted for a large international telecoms and technology company in an LCIA international commercial arbitration concerning the implementation of a 3G network (settled after the final hearing and Award). (With David Lord QC)

Emmott v Michael Wilson & Partners Ltd [2009] EWHC 1 (Comm):

The first reported (and widely commented upon) decision on the Court’s powers under s. 42 Arbitration Act 1996 with regard to enforcement of a peremptory order made by a Tribunal. (With
Anthony Boswood QC)

Ad hoc arbitration [2008-2010]:

Anna acted in the hearing of a very substantial ad hoc commercial arbitration regarding alleged breaches of fiduciary and contractual duties (including the diversion of business opportunities) arising out of a business venture in the Republic of Kazakhstan. (With Anthony Boswood QC)

Offshore litigation

Anna has acted in many cases before the courts of Jersey, Guernsey, the BVI, the Cayman Islands and Bermuda.

Professional negligence

A number of Anna’s cases have involved allegations of professional negligence (see RP Explorer, Irving Picard, Connor Williams and Wilson v Emmott). Whilst Anna has dealt primarily with allegations of professional negligence against large firms of solicitors (which cases are confidential) and directors, she also has experience of cases involving alleged negligence by accountants, barristers, pension fund trustees and auditors.

Unjust enrichment & restitution claims

Many of Anna’s cases involve restitutionary claims, both within and outside of the civil fraud context. For example:

Irving Picard (Trustee of BLMIS)-v- (1) Kingate Management Ltd (2) FIM Ltd & Ors [2013]:
A cutting edge case arising out of the Bernard Madoff fraud which is proceeding in Bermuda and which will develop the law on unjust enrichment.

Independent Trustee Services Ltd-v- (1) GP Noble Trustees Ltd and Ors (2) Susan Morris [2012] EWCA Civ 195: A case on rescission and restitution arising out of the innocent receipt of trust monies.

Nelgado –v- Sanadiradze (2014):

A case involving questions about the consequential effects of rescission and the limits of restitutio in integrum.

Career

2008: Call

2002-2008: Solicitor, Commercial Litigation (Stephenson Harwood and Simmons & Simmons)

Education

1999: Legal Practice Course
1998: Law and French Law at University College London
1997: Université d’Assas