Professional practice

Adam has a broad commercial litigation and international arbitration practice, with particular interests in shipping, civil fraud, energy and natural resources, and the conflict of laws. He has appeared in the Court of Appeal, the High Court (QBD, Chancery Division, and Commercial Court) and in the County Courts. He has also acted as junior counsel in international commercial arbitrations seated in various jurisdictions. He has been instructed in cases subject to many different arbitral rules, including those of the ICC, UNCITRAL, the LMAA, SIAC, the LCIA, and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

Adam’s practice frequently involves cases with an international element. He has experience in cases involving issues of jurisdiction and enforcement of foreign decisions in litigation and arbitration. He also has experience in cases involving issues of foreign substantive and/or procedural law. He has previously acted as junior counsel at arbitration hearings in Singapore.

Adam’s cases in the last two to three years have included: jurisdiction challenges, civil appeals, civil fraud and bribery cases, joint venture and share purchase disputes, applications for interim injunctions, claims pursuant to cross-undertakings in damages, contempt of court applications, disputes concerning investor introduction fees, disputes concerning the forfeiture of an agent’s remuneration, disputes concerning offshore drilling, shipping cases, and shipbuilding claims.

 

Examples of Recent Cases

Aspen Underwriting Ltd (& Ors) v. Credit Europe Bank NV [2018] EWCA Civ 2590. Adam appeared with Steven Berry QC for the defendant Bank in appeals concerned with the rules of jurisdiction applicable in ‘matters relating to insurance’, pursuant to the Brussels Re-Cast Regulation 1215/2012. The Court of Appeal’s decision raises, among other issues, a new point concerning the scope of Article 14(1) and the rule that a policyholder, insured, or beneficiary of insurance is to be sued in the courts of domicile.

Blackstar Advisors Ltd v. Cheyne Capital International Ltd [2018] EWHC 3496 (Comm). Adam appeared, with Steven Berry QC, for the successful defendants in a two-week Commercial Court trial concerning claims for fees in connection with the introduction of hedge fund investors. The legal issues concerned the construction of contractual agreements and the principles of estoppel by representation and estoppel by convention.

SCF Tankers Ltd (formerly, Fiona Trust & Holding Corporation) (& Ors) v. Privalov (& Ors) [2018] 1 WLR 5623 (CA); [2017] 2 All ER 570 (Comm). Adam appeared, with Steven Berry QC and Nathan Pillow QC, in a successful two-week Commercial Court trial to enforce cross-undertakings in damages contained in worldwide freezing orders and a security regime. The award of c. US$60m in damages at first instance (Males J.) was upheld by the Court of Appeal.

Pan Petroleum Aje Ltd v. Yinka Folawiyo Petroleum (& Ors) [2017] EWCA Civ 1525, [2017] EWHC 1102 (Comm). Adam appeared, with David Joseph QC, in successful arbitration applications for injunctive relief, contempt of court proceedings for breach of the injunction, and an appeal against the findings of contempt. The case concerned a joint venture dispute arising out of an agreement to operate an offshore Nigerian oil field.

HPOR Serviços de Consultoria v. Dryships Inc (& Anr) [2018] EWHC 3451 (Comm). Adam appeared, with David Joseph QC, for the successful respondents to an appeal brought pursuant to s. 69 of the Arbitration Act 1996. The legal issues concerned the remedies of ‘account of profits’ and ‘equitable forfeiture’ of an agent’s remuneration in circumstances of a repudiatory breach of fiduciary duty.

Arbitration & related court applications

Adam has experience as counsel in international arbitrations seated in London and Singapore. Examples of past cases in which he has been instructed include:

International Arbitrations (London, LMAA Rules). Adam is acting, with Roderick Cordara QC and Andrew Dinsmore, for the purchasers of Ultramax newbuilding vessels in a series of disputes with a shipyard in the Far East. The disputes raise complex technical issues of propulsion design and construction and legal issues concerned with the construction of contractual agreements and the ‘prevention principle’.

International Arbitrations (London, LMAA Rules). Adam acted, with David Joseph QC, in two parallel arbitrations concerning claims for commission pursuant to agency and brokerage agreements in relation to drilling contracts. The legal issues concerned allegations of misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of contract.

International Arbitrations (London, LMAA Rules). Adam acted, with David Joseph QC, in two concurrent arbitrations concerning claims for commission pursuant to a consultancy and advisory agreement in relation to a drilling contract. The legal issues concerned contractual interpretation, alleged oral agreements, and without prejudice privilege.

Ad hoc International Arbitration (London, CI Arb Rules). Adam acted, as junior counsel in a team led by Mark Levy of Allen & Overy (previously acting with Sam Wordsworth QC and Adam Woolnough), on behalf of a State and its national anti-corruption office in connection with a long-running and complex dispute with a Manx investment company. The pleaded claims were for damages in excess of US$500 million.

International Arbitration (Singapore, UNCITRAL Rules). Adam acted, with Graham Dunning QC, in an arbitration concerning the sale and purchase of shares in Indonesian mining companies. The legal issues included matters of arbitral jurisdiction and contractual interpretation, including matters of foreign law.

International Arbitrations (Singapore, SIAC Rules). Adam acted, with Jern-Fei Ng QC, on behalf of a manufacturer of solar panels, in a series of arbitrations seated in Singapore involving legal issues of arbitral jurisdiction and contractual interpretation.

Adam also advises and acts as counsel in arbitration-related court applications. Past cases have included: (i) applications and appeals pursuant to s. 69 of the Arbitration Act 1996; (ii) applications for interim injunctions pursuant to s. 44 of the Arbitration Act 1996 (e.g. protective orders and anti-suit injunctions); and (iii) matters relating to the recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards.

Adam has also acted as a Tribunal secretary.

Civil fraud & asset recovery

Adam has experience pursuing and defending claims involving allegations of bribery and fraud. Examples of past cases include:

SCF Tankers Ltd (formerly, Fiona Trust & Holding Corporation) (& Ors) v. Privalov (& Ors) [2018] 1 WLR 5623 (CA); [2017] 2 All ER 570 (Comm). Adam appeared, with Steven Berry QC and Nathan Pillow QC, in a successful two-week Commercial Court trial to enforce cross-undertakings in damages contained in worldwide freezing orders and a security regime. The award of c. US$60m in damages at first instance (Males J.) was upheld by the Court of Appeal.

Seaton Trustees (& Ors) v. Schneider Electric (& Ors) (Commercial Court). Adam acted, with Stephen Houseman QC and James Collins QC, in a share purchase dispute involving allegations of fraud and breach of warranty.

International Arbitrations (London, LMAA Rules). Adam successfully acted, with David Joseph QC, in two parallel arbitrations concerning claims for commission pursuant to agency and brokerage agreements in relation to drilling contracts. The legal issues concerned allegations of misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of contract.

Hiscocks v. Pandya & Mangat (Leicester County Court). Adam successfully acted in a four-day trial against two defendants involving allegations of fraudulent tampering with the identity of a classic car.

Adam is also currently instructed as junior counsel to other members of Essex Court Chambers in ongoing matters involving alleged dishonesty, civil fraud, bribery, and breach of fiduciary duty in commercial transactions.

Shipping & admiralty

Adam is instructed to advise and appear on behalf of clients in the shipping and shipbuilding industries, including owners, charterers, shipyards, financiers, and insurers. Examples of past cases include:

International Arbitrations (London, LMAA Rules). Adam is acting, with Roderick Cordara QC and Andrew Dinsmore, for the purchasers of Ultramax newbuilding vessels in a series of disputes against a shipyard in the Far East. The disputes raise complex technical issues of propulsion design and construction and legal issues concerned with the construction of contractual agreements and the ‘prevention principle’.

International Arbitrations (London, LMAA Rules). Adam acted, with Roderick Cordara QC, on behalf of the shipowners in disputes arising out of the fuel consumption of two newbuilding vessels constructed in the Far East. The disputes raised issues of contractual interpretation and marine engineering relevant to fuel consumption.

Aspen Underwriting Ltd (& Ors) v. Credit Europe Bank NV [2018] EWCA Civ 2590. Adam appeared with Steven Berry QC for the defendant Bank in jurisdiction appeals concerned with ‘matters relating to insurance’. The underlying dispute concerns a claim by marine insurers to recover an indemnity paid following the loss of the vessel ‘Atlantik Confidence’.

International Arbitration (London, LMAA Rules). Adam is instructed, with Stephen Houseman QC, on behalf of the charterers of a transshipment vessel operating in South America. The issues arising include matters of contractual interpretation and estoppel in the context of cargo shortage claims.

International Arbitration (London, LMAA Rules). Adam appeared, with Roderick Cordara QC and Jern-Fei Ng, on behalf of a Chinese shipyard in a shipbuilding dispute heard over six weeks concerning the construction of a Cape size bulk carrier. The case raised a number of technical issues concerning, among others, shaft alignment and non-destructive testing.

International Arbitration (London, LMAA Rules). Adam was instructed, with Steven Berry QC, on behalf of shipowners in arbitral proceedings arising out of a cargo fire on board a bulk carrier vessel in UK waters.

International Arbitration (London, LMAA Rules). Adam appeared, with Steven Berry QC, for the demise charterers of an oil products tanker in a tripartite dispute concerning delivery/redelivery.

A claim before the Hamburg Regional Court. Adam is instructed to advise on issues of English law arising in a claim between parties active in the shipping industry.

Career

August 2014: SEC International Advanced Advocacy Course, Keble College, Oxford

April / May 2014: Bar Council Exchange Programme in Seoul, South Korea

October 2011: Tenancy at Essex Court Chambers

2010-2011: Pupillage at Essex Court Chambers

2010: Call, Lincolns Inn

Education

2009-2010: Bar Vocational Course, BPP Law School

2008-2009: LLM Commercial Law (First Class), Magdalene College, Cambridge University

2004-2008: BA Jurisprudence (English and French Law) (First Class) Magdalen College, University of Oxford

University of Paris ll (Panthéon-Assas) (ERASMUS, Diplôme en Droit Français) 2007

Awards

2009: Lord Denning Scholarship, Lincoln’s Inn

2009: Scholarship and Academic Prize, Magdalene College, Cambridge University

2006: Scholarship, Magdalen College, University of Oxford