15th July 2016
Marcus Grant (instructed by Hamida Khatun of Keoghs LLP) appeared for UK Insurance in its pursuit of Mr Gentry for dishonesty in the presentation of his claim that culminated in the Court of Appeal refusing to grant relief from sanctions to an insurer who was late in applying to set aside a default judgment on the ground that the judgment was obtained on a claim that was likely to be fraudulent see: Gentry v. Miller & UKI Limited  EWCA Civ 141.
The Court of Appeal, however, acceded to an application by UK Insurance to stay execution on the default judgment and all of the costs of and occasioned by the appeals pending the outcome of any tort of deceit action seeking recovery for the consequences of Mr Gentry’s alleged deceit. The action arose out of an alleged road accident in March 2012 that gave rise to a default judgment for £75,089 and a judgment on costs of £12,975. UK Insurance discovered cogent evidence linking Mr Gentry to its insured, Mr Miller before the alleged accident. Mr Gentry filed a statement verified with a statement truth saying that they only became friends after the alleged accident. UK Insurance obtained compelling evidence to demonstrate that statement was untrue.
Following the Court of Appeal judgment on 9th March 2016, UK Insurance commenced tort of deceit proceedings in the High Court and, within those proceedings, sought permission to commence committal proceedings against Mr Gentry for his contempt of Court in signing a statement of truth to a witness statement containing material statements of fact he knew to be untrue. At the permission hearing before HHJ Simpkiss, sitting as a Judge of the High Court, Mr Gentry admitted the contempt. Sentencing will take place later this year. The tort of deceit action remains contested.