In a scorching judgment handed down on 16 August 2018, Popplewell J discharged a US$3 billion worldwide freezing order granted on a without notice to the sovereign wealth fund of Angola against the son of the former President and others on the grounds of “serious and culpable nondisclosure” by the Claimant and lack of jurisdiction of the English court.

The judgment provides a lucid and authoritative statement of principle in relation to both the duty of disclosure and the issue of jurisdiction. But it will be of greatest interest to practitioners in the strong signal which it sends out about the importance of both the client and its legal team complying with the duty of full and frank disclosure on making a without notice application. Any lawyer practising in this field would be well-advised to study the judgment with care to avoid repeating the mistakes made by the Claimant and its advisers, for which they were severely criticised by the judge.