By Nick Curling

In CMOC v Persons Unknown [2017] EWHC 3599 (Comm) the claimant, China Molybdenum Company (CMOC), successfully obtained a worldwide freezing order against a class of unknown respondents. This was the first time the English Courts have granted a freezing order against unidentified individuals.


The claim underlying CMOC’s freezing order application related to losses sustained as a result of an alleged fraud perpetrated by certain individuals within the company. Those individuals had gained unauthorised access to a senior manager’s email account and successfully instructed several large payments totalling in excess of £6M from CMOC’s bank account, held with Bank of China’s London branch, to various other banks around the world.