The High Court today ruled that broker BGC Partners acted unlawfully when it conspired to poach senior staff from rival Tullett Prebon.
Rosenblatt Solicitors partner Clive Hyer instructed One Essex Court’s Jeffery Onions QC to act for Tullett Prebon in the case. The action was launched against BGC Partners and former senior Tullett Prebon executive Anthony Verrier, who left to join BGC in 2008.
Onions and his team successfully argued that the defendants were liable for damages after inducing 10 brokers to break their contracts with Tullett Prebon.
Mr Justice Jack upheld a series of claims, including that the claimant was entitled to a “no poach injunction” granted in April 2009 that prevented BGC from recruiting any Tullett Prebon staff whether lawfully or not. The injunction, he ruled, should continue because the defendant had acted unlawfully.
“The court must assume that the exposure of BGC’s conduct as set out in the judgment will curb unlawful recruitment in the future,” Jack J said.
Furthermore, the court held that Tullett Prebon was entitled to recoup signing and bonus payments from brokers who were also named as defendants in the action.
An injunction that prevented those brokers from starting work at BGC Partners will expire on 26 March, allowing them to return to work after a year out of the market.
A counter-claim brought by BGC Partners against Tullett Prebon for allegedly inducing breaches of BGC’s forward contracts was dismissed.
Tullett Prebon: Rosenblatt partner Clive Hyer instructed One Essex Court’s Jeffery Onions QC, 11KBW’s Daniel Oudkerk and Amy Rogers
BGC Brokers, BGC Brokers GP Ltd and Shaun Lynn: McDermott Will & Emery instructed Essex Court Chambers’ Andrew Hochhauser QC and Littleton Chambers’ Jonathan Cohen
Anthony Verrier: Russell Jones & Walker instructed Littleton Chambers’ Stuart Ritchie and Christopher Newman