Gibraltar Supreme Court dismisses five applications by Defendants
The Supreme Court of Gibraltar has refused five applications made by the Defendants in a libel claim brought by Nick Cruz, a Gibraltarian barrister, against the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission and its former CEO and Director of Legal, Enforcement and Policy, in relation to a press release published on 26 October 2016 about the insolvency of Enterprise Insurance Company plc.
In a judgment handed down on Friday 31 January 2020 following a four-day hearing in September 2019, Mr Justice Yeats dismissed the following applications by the Defendants:
1. An application to strike out the Claimant’s pleas of malice and bad faith (save for three paragraphs from the Claimant’s particulars of claim, which were not deemed to pass the Telnikoff test requiring them to be more consistent with dishonesty than with its absence).
2. An application for summary judgment on the grounds of statutory immunity under the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission Act 2007 (which was dependent upon striking out the Claimant’s plea of bad faith).
3. An application for summary judgment on the basis of qualified privilege (which was dependent upon striking out the Claimant’s plea of malice).
4. An application to strike out the claim as an abuse of process on the grounds of improper collateral purpose, ‘warehousing’ and the rule in O’Reilly v Mackman.
5. An application to stay the claim pending resolution of a regulatory investigation.
At the hand-down of his judgment Mr Justice Yeats granted the Defendants permission to appeal to the Court of Appeal of Gibraltar in relation to his decision on the strike out application.
The judgment can be downloaded from the ‘Files‘ link below.