Court dismisses strike-out application in mis-selling and LIBOR manipulation claim

Court dismisses strike-out application in mis-selling and LIBOR manipulation claim

What were the key issues raised in Hockin and others v Royal Bank of Scotland and another, in which the Chancery Division heard an application to strike-out key parts of a claim relating to allegations of LIBOR manipulation and the mis-selling of swaps made against the Royal Bank of Scotland?

Original news

Hockin and others v Royal Bank of Scotland and another [2016] EWHC 925 (Ch)

What were the facts of the case?

The claimants in this case were Mr and Mrs Hockin, who are in the process of bringing substantial claims alleging mis-selling of interest rate products and interest rate fixing against the Royal Bank of Scotland and National Westminster Bank (the Banks). The claimants were the ultimate owners of a company called London & West Country Estates (LWE), which is now in administration, and LWE's claims against the Banks were assigned to the claimants in March 2014 pursuant to a deed of assignment. LWE owned and managed a number of commercial business parks in Somerset and Devon. In 2008, it borrowed a £55m loan facility from the Banks, which it was required to repay over three years with interest referable to LIBOR (the 2008 Facility). It was a precondition of the 2008 Facility that the borrower hedge its interest exposure and as a result the parties also agreed a ten-year bank callable interest rate swap (the Swap). In or around October 2009, LWE was placed into the Bank’s global restructuring group (GRG). After a period, the 2008 Facility was assigned to a company referred to as Isobel, a joint venture owned by the Banks and the Blackstone private equity group, at a significant discount, despite what were alleged to have been substantial offers made by LWE to refinance the 2008 Facility. This was as part of the high-profile 'Project Isobel', a £1.36bn property loan portfolio sale which was completed in 2011. Isobel subsequently placed LWE into administration.

The case at

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