Eversheds awaits High Court summons in wrangle over ownership of company

Eversheds is facing a High Court battle after refusing to hand over company documents

The claim was issued in the Chancery Division on 21 March by Lane & Partners on behalf of Panamanian company Xoilan Trader, which deals in antiquities. Eversheds has acted for Xoilan several times. Xoilan and a second claimant, Despina Papad-imitriou, are demanding the delivery of all company documents in the possession of Eversheds, as well as from three other defendants.
Eversheds is taking a neutral stance by holding on to the documents, as there is a dispute as to who exactly owns Xoilan. The other defendants in the action are Robin Symes of Robin Symes Ltd and Henri Jacques, both former directors of Xoilan. The dispute arose after the death of Christo Michailidis, who the claimant says was in partnership with Symes. Michailidis died intestate in 1999 and his sister, the second claimant, says that she is the owner of Xoilan. Symes denies the existence of a partnership and instead argues that he is the beneficial owner of the company.
Eversheds refused to relinquish the documents to the Michailidis estate’s administrators during a previous High Court application, on the grounds that they belonged to Xoilan. There is a hearing this week that challenges the jurisdiction of claimants. Assuming this is refused, the matter will lead to a full trial of the action.