Professional practice

Bibek has a broad commercial practice in line with Chambers’ profile. He has particular interests in commercial litigation & arbitration, civil fraud, the conflict of laws, employment and shipping. He has acted in a wide spectrum of commercial and employment disputes in the Commercial Court and Chancery Divisions of the High Court, the Tax Tribunal, the Employment Tribunal as well as a number of County Court matters. He also has experience in a wide range of arbitrations including ad hoc arbitrations and those conducted pursuant to HKIAC, ICC, LCIA and LMAA rules. Bibek also has experience of arbitration-related court applications, including advising on section 67, 68 and 69 challenges. As an advocate, Bibek has appeared led and unled in the High Court and as counsel in the County Courts. He is equally comfortable acting as sole counsel or as part of a larger team.

The core of Bibek’s practice is commercial dispute resolution, predominantly with an international element. Bibek’s practice ranges across the full dispute resolution process, including pre-issue advice and strategy, interim applications, disclosure, trial, and enforcement. Bibek is often involved in cases giving rise to conflicts of law issues and has worked on a number of cases involving a foreign applicable law (for example, the laws of Belgium, France, Malaysia, Oman, Ontario, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, and the UAE).

Bibek has appeared in a number of remote hearings and is comfortable using the major platforms, such as Zoom, Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams.

He graduated with a first class degree in Economics from the University of Cambridge, followed by a first class degree in law from the University of Oxford. He was then awarded the Charles and Julia Henry Fellowship to study as a Special Student at Harvard University.

Prior to joining Essex Court Chambers, Bibek was a Visiting Lecturer in Tort law at King’s College London.

 

Examples of Recent Cases
  • National Bank Trust v Mints & ors, junior counsel (with Nathan Pillow QC and Anton Dudnikov, instructed by Steptoe & Johnson LLP) concerning a major $600m fraud on a bank. Bibek is also instructed in related LCIA arbitration proceedings.
  • Naibu v Pinsent Masons & anor, junior counsel (with Chris Smith QC, instructed by Clyde & Co), concerning in relation to a claim by a Chinese sportswear company against its former solicitors advising it in respect of an IPO. Bibek is also instructed in related HKIAC arbitration proceedings.
  • Hard & Locke v Kuwait Investment Office, counsel (instructed by Allen & Overy and Fox Williams LLP) in claims brought by former employees for age and sex discrimination, whistleblowing and victimisation, also raising issues of state and diplomatic immunity.
  • An ICC arbitration, junior counsel (with David Joseph QC and Iain Quirk, instructed by Baker & McKenzie) concerning the sale of shareholding in a bank, raising issues as to the availability of specific performance, declarations of beneficial interest, equitable bars to relief and EU public policy.
  • Nori & ors v PJSC Bank Otkritie Financial Corp [2018] EWHC 1343 (Comm), junior counsel (with Stephen Houseman QC, instructed by Steptoe & Johnson LLP) in a leading authority on the availability of anti-suit injunctions as against parties who have sought relief in courts of jurisdictions inside and outside the EU and non-arbitrability of insolvency disputes.
  • FM Capital Partners v Marino & ors [2018] EWHC 1768 (Comm), junior counsel (with Nathan Pillow QC and Anton Dudnikov, instructed by Hogan Lovells International LLP), in a Commercial Court dispute concerning allegations of bribery, breach of directors’ duties, conspiracy, dishonest assistance and issues of Swiss law.
  • Sidhu v Your.MD, junior counsel (with Andrew Hochhauser QC and Jane Russell, instructed by Mishcon de Reya LLP) for the Claimant in an Employment Tribunal claim for unfair dismissal, whistleblowing, race, sex and sexual orientation discrimination.
  • Solar Supplies & Services v Larkfleet Limited & ors, sole counsel (instructed by Greene & Greene LLP) appearing and advising on a contested late registration of a charge, raising issues of director knowledge, enforceability of agreements, and waiver by conduct.
  • A LCIA arbitration, junior counsel (with Jeffrey Gruder QC, instructed by DWF LLP) concerning contract, fraudulent misrepresentations and conspiracy disputes relating to various settlement agreements, litigation in Russia and the BVI, and a share option in a potentially valuable mining asset.
Arbitration & related court applications

Bibek has developed considerable experience in arbitration and related court applications. He has advised and acted either as sole or junior counsel in arbitrations conducted in London and abroad, including ad hoc arbitrations and arbitrations conducted under the HKIAC, ICC, LCIA and LMAA Rules. Recent instructions include:

  • A LCIA arbitration, junior counsel (with Nathan Pillow QC and Anton Dudnikov) concerning a major $600m fraud on a bank.
  • An ICC arbitration, junior counsel (with David Joseph QC and Iain Quirk) concerning the sale of shareholding in a bank, raising issues as to the availability of specific performance, declarations of beneficial interest, equitable bars to relief and EU public policy.
  • A LCIA arbitration (sole counsel) in a dispute in relation to a share purchase facility.
  • A LMAA arbitration (sole counsel) concerning economic duress.
  • Advised on and drafted a variety of section 67, 68 and 69 challenges.
  • A LCIA arbitration, junior counsel (with Jeffrey Gruder QC) concerning contract, fraudulent misrepresentations and conspiracy disputes relating to various settlement agreements, litigation in Russia and the BVI, and a share option in a potentially valuable mining asset.
  • A LCIA arbitration, junior counsel (with Edward Brown) concerning a contract dispute and claims of conspiracy in the sale of agricultural products.
  • Nori & ors v PJSC Bank Otkritie Financial Corp [2018] EWHC 1343 (Comm), junior counsel (with Stephen Houseman QC) in a leading authority on the availability of anti-suit injunctions as against parties who have sought relief in courts of jurisdictions inside and outside the EU and non-arbitrability of insolvency disputes.
  • A LMAA arbitration, junior counsel (with Roderick Cordara QC) in a shipping dispute, raising issues of contractual construction, fiduciary duties, good faith and limitation.
  • Instructed in an LCIA arbitration concerning the sale of an infrastructure asset.
Banking & financial services

Bibek is currently instructed in Commercial Court and arbitration proceedings as junior counsel (with Nathan Pillow QC and A Dudnikov) in a claim involving a major $600m fraud on a bank. In addition, his recent experience includes:

  • An ICC arbitration, junior counsel (with David Joseph QC and Iain Quirk) concerning the sale of shareholding in a bank, raising issues as to the availability of specific performance, declarations of beneficial interest, equitable bars to relief and EU public policy.
  • Advising a victim of push payment fraud as to potential claims against a bank.
  • Advising (with David Foxton QC) on the effect of the re-imposition of US sanctions on Iran and the EU Blocking Regulation on a bank-account holder with a major bank.
  • FM Capital Partners v Marino & ors [2018] EWHC 1768 (Comm), junior counsel (with Nathan Pillow QC and Anton Dudnikov), concerning allegations of bribery, breach of directors’ duties, conspiracy, dishonest assistance and issues of Swiss law.
  • Sole counsel in numerous County Court trials, particularly in cases concerning the Consumer Credit Act, fraud and negligence.
Civil fraud & asset recovery

Bibek has considerable experience of civil fraud work. He has acted or is acting in a variety of different types of civil fraud cases, including:

  • National Bank Trust v Mints & ors, Commercial Court proceedings and a LCIA arbitration, junior counsel (with Nathan Pillow QC and Anton Dudnikov, in a major $600m fraud on a bank.
  • PJSC Tatneft v Bogolyubov, junior counsel in a Commercial Court dispute involving claims under Article 1064 of the Russian Civil Code.
  • A LCIA arbitration, junior counsel (with Jeffrey Gruder QC) concerning contract, fraudulent misrepresentations and conspiracy disputes relating to various settlement agreements, litigation in Russia and the BVI, and a share option in a potentially valuable mining asset.
  • FM Capital Partners v Marino & ors [2018] EWHC 1768 (Comm), junior counsel (with Nathan Pillow QC and Anton Dudnikov), concerning allegations of bribery, breach of directors’ duties, conspiracy, dishonest assistance and raising issues of Swiss law.
  • Slater & Gordon v Watchstone, junior counsel (with Richard Millett QC and Watson Pringle) in for the defendant against allegations of fraudulent misrepresentation and breaches of warranty.
Commercial dispute resolution

Commercial dispute resolution, in both litigation and arbitration, is the core of Bibek’s practice. He has advised and acted in a wide range of commercial disputes as sole or junior counsel and continues to undertake work across the full spectrum of commercial disputes.

Bibek has considerable experience in various interim applications, including applications for strike out and summary judgment, specific disclosure, security for costs and extensions of time.

  • Slater & Gordon v Watchstone, junior counsel (with by Richard Millett QC and Watson Pringle) for the defendant against allegations of fraudulent misrepresentation and breaches of warranty.
  • Prime Energy v Xodus, junior counsel (with by Claire Blanchard QC), concerning allegations of misrepresentation in an asset and share sale agreement.
  • A LCIA arbitration (sole counsel) in a dispute in relation to a share purchase facility.
  • A LMAA arbitration (sole counsel) concerning economic duress.
  • Advising a landlord in relation to unpaid rent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, raising issues as to service out under the Hague Service Convention in relation to the guarantor.
  • A LCIA arbitration, junior counsel (with Edward Brown) concerning a contract dispute and claims of conspiracy in the sale of agricultural products.
  • Basis Technologies International Limited v Sly, counsel for the successful Claimant in a shareholder dispute, in a 2 day trial in the Queens’ Bench Division.
  • Dole Europe v Desiva, counsel for the successful Defendant in a breach of contract dispute concerning the shipment of grapes, in a 2 day trial in March 2019.
  • Papadimitriou v Kahn, counsel for the successful Claimant in claims for breach of contract and conversion.
  • Advised a party of in a potential dispute over an aerospace contract.
  • Advised a party in a contractual dispute concerning an experimental urban vehicle.
  • Appeared as sole counsel in numerous cases in the County Court, particularly in cases concerning banking and financial services, breaches of contract and tort.
Company & Insolvency Law

Bibek has significant experience in this area and recent instructions include the following:

  • Advising on directors’ duties and strategy in the context of claims brought against entities which are potentially insolvent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Advising on directors’ duties in the context of a shareholder dispute in various ship-owning companies and potential insolvencies
  • Solar Supplies & Services v Larkfleet Limited & ors, appearing and advising on a contested late registration of a charge, raising issues of director knowledge, enforceability of agreements, and waiver by conduct.
  • Nori & ors v PJSC Bank Otkritie Financial Corp [2018] EWHC 1343 (Comm), junior counsel (with Stephen Houseman QC) in a leading authority on the availability of anti-suit injunctions as against parties who have sought relief in courts of jurisdictions inside and outside the EU and non-arbitrability of insolvency disputes.
  • Appearing in and advising on winding up petitions.
Employment

Bibek is regularly instructed in employment disputes and has significant experience in this area. Recent instructions include the following:

  • Hard & Locke v Kuwait Investment Office, appearing for the Respondent in the Employment Tribunal in relation to age and sex discrimination, whistleblowing and victimisation claims, raising issues of state and diplomatic immunity.
  • Citadel v GSA Capital Partners, junior counsel (with David Craig QC) in a High Court restrictive covenant case raising various disclosure issues
  • Sidhu v Your.MD, junior counsel (with Andrew Hochhauser QC and Jane Russell) for the Claimant in an Employment Tribunal claim for unfair dismissal, whistleblowing, race, sex and sexual orientation discrimination.
  • TradingScreen v Konneh, appearing for the claimant in an application for pre-action disclosure against a senior employee alleged to in breach of contract and fiduciary duty
  • Astrazeneca v Miels, junior counsel (with Dan Oudkerk QC) in a High Court restrictive covenant case raising various disclosure and confidentiality issues
  • Advising and instructed in various claims against employees for breaches of restrictive covenants and infringements of copyright and/or intellectual property.
  • Assisting and advising a respondent on disclosure and privilege issues in a LCIA arbitration initiated by a partner of a law firm dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct.
  • Advising on good and bad leaver provisions for a senior employee in the context of a takeover dispute.
  • Assisted a member of Chambers on a ICC arbitration shareholder dispute, concerning allegations of wrongful misconduct and the proper interpretation of restrictive covenants.
  • Advised on an employee’s entitlement to allegedly overpaid salary.
European law & competition

Bibek has a particular interest in European law (including competition law) and recent instructions include the following:

  • Advising on the competition law consequences of a right of first refusal as a restriction on competition
  • Advising on GDPR obligations, including related state and diplomatic immunity issues.
  • An ICC arbitration, junior counsel (with David Joseph QC and Iain Quirk, instructed by Baker & McKenzie) concerning the sale of shareholding in a bank, raising issues as to EU public policy in relation to the approval regime for acquisition of a significant shareholding in a bank.
Media, art, entertainment

Bibek has a particular interest in Media, Art, Entertainment & Sport. He is currently instructed (as sole counsel) in a claim relating to a valuable Middle Eastern artefact alleged to have been stolen.

Professional negligence

Examples of Bibek’s practice in this area include:

  • Naibu v Pinsent Masons & anor, junior counsel (with Christopher Smith QC) for the Defendant in relation to a claim by a Chinese sportswear company against its former solicitors advising it in respect of an IPO.
  • Advising (with Huw Davies QC) a claimant insurance and reinsurance company regarding a potential claim against an auditor’s failure to detect a fraud perpetrated by its finance director.
Public international law
  • Hard & Locke v Kuwait Investment Office, appearing for the Respondent in the Employment Tribunal in relation to age and sex discrimination, whistleblowing and victimisation claims, raising issues of state and diplomatic immunity.
  • Advising in relation to GDPR obligations, also raising issues of state and diplomatic immunity.
Revenue law (including VAT, IPT, duties & excise)
  • Advising (with Roderick Cordara QC) on a dispute concerning the tax treatment of hotels in a Caribbean jurisdiction.
  • Landid Property Ltd v Revenue and Customs Commissioners [2017] UKFTT 692; [2017] STI 2631, junior counsel (with David Ewart QC), concerning the income tax and corporation tax treatment of employee benefit trusts.
Shipping & admiralty

Bibek has a particular interest in shipping disputes and examples of work Bibek has recently undertaken include:

  • A LMAA arbitration, junior counsel (with Roderick Cordara QC), concerning breaches of contract in a shipping dispute raising issues of contractual construction, fiduciary duties, good faith and limitation.
  • Ad-hoc arbitration, junior counsel (with Jern-Fei Ng), concerning a contractual dispute concerning a contract of affreightment.
  • Instructed in various claims concerning damage to ships’ tanks allegedly due to contaminated sulphuric acid.
  • Instructed in various claims concerning speed and consumption claims.
  • Advising on directors’ duties in the context of a shareholder dispute in various ship-owning companies and potential insolvencies.
  • Advised on a demurrage dispute.
  • Advising (with David Foxton QC) a carrier in a mis-delivery claim.
Unjust enrichment & restitution claims

Bibek’s practice requires him to advise on and litigate unjust enrichment issues. Examples of cases where such matters have arisen include:

  • Advising on unjust enrichment claims arising from a total failure of consideration and jurisdiction issues arising under the Brussels I Recast Regulation and the Lugano II Convention.
  • Advising on a defence of change of position in a claim for mistaken payment.
Career

2016: Tenant at Essex Court Chambers

2015-16: Pupillage, Essex Court Chambers

2015: Called to the bar (Gray’s Inn)

2013-14: Visiting Lecturer in Tort, King’s College London

Education

2014-15: University of Law, BPTC (Outstanding)

2013-14: Harvard University, Sir Charles and Lady Julia Henry Fellowship, Special Student

2011-13: Jesus College, Oxford BA Jurisprudence (First Class Honours, sixth in year)

2008-11: Pembroke College, Cambridge, BA Economics (Double First Class Honours)

Awards

2015: Atkin Scholar (Gray’s Inn)

2015: Award for the highest mark in International Commercial Practice (BPTC)

2014: Advocacy Scholar (BPTC)

2013: Sir Charles & Lady Julia Henry Fellowship (Harvard University)

2013: Bedingfield Scholarship (Gray’s Inn)

2013: Martin Wronker Prize for Jurisprudence (Oxford University)

2013: D’Souza Prize for best second BA performance (Oxford University)

2013: Viscount Sankey Scholar (Jesus College, Oxford)

2013: Jesus College Prize x 2

2012: Open Scholarship (Jesus College, Oxford)

2012: S R Welson Prize, for best performance by a college law student (Jesus College, Oxford)

2011: David Karmel Scholarship (Gray’s Inn)

2011: Foundress Prize x 2 (Pembroke College, Cambridge)

2010: Pembroke College Prize x 2

2010: Foundation Scholarship (Pembroke College, Cambridge)