Why The Court Removed A Liquidator From Office is a post about Redhouse Holdings Limited v Johnson CLAIM NO. BVIHCM 2010/0138.
The applicants in this matter sought the removal of Mr Johnson from office. But why the court removed a liquidator from office was a rather lugubrious case.
When examined the Court was seemingly critical of a wide range of matters. Perhaps the Court considered the range sufficiently wide that although it noted it would be slow to remove its own officer, it felt it relevant to do so in this case. There is reference to alleged intimidation, allegations, intemperate behaviour, lack of discretion and so on.
Reasons Why The Court Removed A Liquidator From Office
In summary, the Court gave the following four reasons which are fleshed out in more detail below from the judgment:
Alleged Intimidation – Why The Court Removed A Liquidator From Office
Mr Johnson sought information from a Mr Breeze, who was a former financial officer of the company in liquidation. However, Mr Johnson is said to have referred to information in an affidavit as being “short on information and pretty much useless” and then suggested to Mr Breeze’s solicitor, “[h]opefully at any meeting [Mr. Breeze] will not be suffering from amnesia“.
Further, the court said:
There appears to have been threats of referring Mr Breeze and his solicitor to their regulators but this did not happen.
In a nutshell the Court had this to say about the nature of Mr Johnson’s communications:
Server Sabotage Allegations – Why The Court Removed A Liquidator From Office
Mr Johnson had apparently repeatedly stated certain servers had been sabotaged but on the Court’s examination of the matter it had this to say which did not endorse the position of Mr Johnson:
The ‘Panorama’ Television Programme And Newspaper Contributions
The Court had this to say about Mr Johnson’s involvement in a Panorama interview in which he discusssed the liquidation:
Alleged Intemperate Behavior – Why The Court Removed A Liquidator From Office
This was highlighted by a piece of correspondence written to a QC that said “I have no idea who you are” and in the same email, Mr Johnson referred to a Mr “Hashcroft“. It seems the Court was unimpressed:
Then there was a restaurant incident that the Court referred to as follows:
Lord Ashcroft Questionnaire
The Court referred to a lengthy questionnaire that Mr Johnson afforded Lord Ashcroft 21 days to reply to. To say this questionnaire was lengthy might even appear a little bit of an understatement. It was apparently some 750 questions over 62 pages, covering a period over 10 years. The Court was critical of the stylistic nature of some of the questions and the timescale afforded.
The Court’s Findings Giving Rise To Liquidator Removal
The Court was concerned about the following points:
- a lack of candour with the Court in relation to potential claims by seemingly not highlighting all sides of the argument and merits
- distortion and exaggeration by Mr Johnson about the servers being sabotaged
- seeking to exonerate himself in respect of the restaurant incident
- the Court suggested this showed a pattern of conduct
- suggestions of partiality for example in apparently accosting Mr Andrew Ashcroft in a restaurant and suggesting he was going to be ‘taking out’ his father
- the intimidation in threatening to report Mr Breeze and his solicitor to their regulators
In relation to the threat to report to the regulators of Mr Breeze and his solicitor, the Court said was a grave matter and appears to have even gone further:
The Court made reference to attempts apparently to influence public opinion as follows:
Disclaimer: This post Why The Court Removed A Liquidator From Office is not legal advice and not to be relied upon as such. It is provided for information purposes only.