Injunction restrains disposal of £10,000,000 painting

Posted: 24th August 2012

A man who alleges that he was duped over the sale of a painting worth almost £10 million has won a High Court injunction forbidding onward disposal of the art work without 28 days written notice.

The claimant alleges that he was tricked into selling the painting for several million pounds less than it was worth. He is suing the art dealer who acted as his agent in the sale and a leading art collector whose Cayman Islands-based investment corporation bought the painting.

PaintingGranting the injunction, Judge Robert Ham QC said that the claimant – who says that the painting he sold in November 2011 for US$ 6 million could now be worth up to US$ 15 million - was ‘entitled to protection against further possible wrong-doing.’

The claimant’s lawyers are seeking rescission of the sale contract on the basis that the sale of the painting to the particular buyer was unauthorised and that the dealer instructed to act as the seller’s agent received ‘secret commissions’ from the buyer worth US$400,000.

Judge Ham banned the buyer from selling or otherwise dealing with the painting without giving the claimant’s lawyers 28 days’ notice. That, he said, would give time for the claimant to return to court to seek a further order blocking any planned sale or other disposal of the art work.