National Bank of Kazakhstan and the Republic of Kazakhstan v Bank of New York Mellon, Anatolie Stati and others – Claim No. FL-2018-000007
3VB’s Ali Malek QC, David Quest QC, William Edwards and Ravi Jackson (instructed by Stewarts Law partners Fiona Gillett and Ian Gatt QC for Kazakhstan), have commenced the remote trial of this 7-day $500m Financial List claim before Mr Justice Teare. This 3 party action, involving cross examination of internationally located witnesses (in Belgium, the US and Kazakhstan) is proceeding on a fully remote basis, by video.
The trial proceeds subsequent to an unsuccessful application by the Defendants on the 19th March to adjourn the trial. The Judge, Mr Justice Teare, rejected the defendants’ application that the trial should be adjourned because of the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis. In his decision, the Judge referred to the Lord Chief Justice’s guidance on the conduct of hearings during the crisis and said: “The court has to be optimistic, rather than pessimistic. It is the duty of all of the parties to seek to co-operate to ensure that a remote hearing is possible.” He ruled that, if practicable, the trial could take place using video conferencing facilities, both for the cross examination of witnesses, and if necessary for the judge and other participants.