Sebastian Said is a Partner in the Dispute Resolution Practice Group of the Cayman Office.
Sebastian specialises in international commercial litigation, banking and funds litigation, corporate insolvency and restructuring, directors’ and shareholder disputes, civil fraud, asset-tracing and recovery, professional negligence disputes, and contentious trust disputes. Much of his experience is in complex cross-border and multi-jurisdictional cases, involving strategic co-ordination with experienced legal teams at leading on-shore law firms and chambers.
With Patricia Robertson QC, he is the co-author and editor of the chapter dealing with the civil liability of Fund Managers, in Simpson QC and Lord Hoffmann (eds.), Professional Negligence and Liability (since 2006).
Sebastian is qualified in the Cayman Islands (Attorney-at-Law, 2013), BVI (Barrister, 2015) and England & Wales (Barrister, 2004), where he is a Door Tenant at Fountain Court Chambers.
He is an experienced advocate, having regularly appeared in the Financial Services Division of the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands, the Commercial Court in the BVI (and before moving to the Caribbean, the Commercial Court and Chancery Division of the High Court in London).
Sebastian has been recommended by the Legal 500 in Cayman (2014 and 2017) and was previously recommended while in practice at the Bar in England. In 2019 he was named a “Next Generation Partner” for Dispute Resolution in the Cayman Islands (Legal 500 2017, “the ‘rising star’”).
He regularly writes articles on current issues in his practice areas, which have been published in The Hedge Fund Law Report, The Cayman Financial Review, The Lawyer and The Trusts and Estates Law and Tax Journal. He also wrote the Appleby response to the Cayman Islands Law Reform Commission’s Consultation Paper on Directors’ Duties, in the wake of the first instance decision of Jones J in Weavering.
Before qualifying, following a gap year working for Arthur Andersen in Corporate Tax, Sebastian studied Jurisprudence at Pembroke College, Oxford, where he took a Double First and was awarded a Domus Scholarship and the Monk Prize for the best performance in examinations at his college. He remained in Oxford to pursue the BCL, a Masters’ degree in law, for which he took a Distinction and was awarded the Simms Prize by the University. Whilst at Oxford, he was also invited to sit the examination for a Prize Fellowship at All Souls College.
After working for Andersen Consulting (Accenture) for a year, Sebastian was called to the English Bar in 2004, as a Major Scholar of Inner Temple. He undertook pupillage at, and later practised as a tenant from, Fountain Court Chambers, one of the Bar’s “magic circle”, before joining Appleby in 2011, initially in the Channel Islands.
He undertakes work for the Bar Pro Bono Unit, has previously volunteered to assist with the Social Mobility Foundation and Bar Council Bar Placement Week, and has acted as a mentor in the Cayman Finance Student Education and Work Experience Programme (2016, 2017 and 2018).
His professional memberships include the Cayman Islands Law Society, the Recovery and Insolvency Specialists Association, the Commercial Bar Association, and overseas membership of the Chancery Bar Association.
Insolvency and Restructuring
- CHC Group (FSD, McMillan J) Application for the appointment of JPLs, in support of a Chapter 11 restructuring of the CHC Group, within Cayman creditor petition proceedings.
- Brookemil (FSD, Jones J) Successful defence of a creditor’s winding up petition brought on a purported promissory note in the sum of US$2.2m, which was proved at trial to be a forgery.
- Fortune Nest (FSD, Cresswell J) Defending a just and equitable winding up petition involving allegations of dishonest breach of fiduciary duty, viz. the misappropriation of share capital of US$9.2m by the sole director.
- OAS Finance (BVI, Leon J) Sole advocate for Deutsche Bank as Trustee of USD 400m of defaulted corporate bonds in seeking the winding-up of the company in the BVI.
- Goldman Sachs: Advising re insolvency claw-back risks in respect of derivative trading with a Cayman SPV counterparty.
- Pokerstars: Advising the world’s largest online poker company on insolvency issues arising out of their US$731m settlement of forfeiture proceedings issued by the US Department of Justice.
- Washington Special Opportunity Fund (FSD, before Mangatal J):
Successful defence of an investment fund in a just and equitable winding up petition. Case selected by The Lawyer as one of the leading offshore cases in the first half of 2016.
- Weavering Clawback Advice: Advising an investment bank on claw-back claims by the Cayman Islands liquidator of Weavering Macro Fixed Income Fund.
- Arch Cru Litigation (Royal Court of Guernsey) – Defending a director in the US$170m claim alleging breach of duty of care in monitoring alternative investments made by the UK based investment manager.
- Jackson v. Dear (Royal Court of Guernsey; LB Talbot QC) Acting for the Plaintiff in bringing the first minority shareholder derivative action before the Royal Court. The US$50m claim was against the directors of a listed hedge fund, for breach of duty in respect of a decision to invest $100m in a start-up real estate fund manager.
- See above, Fortune Nest, Washington Special Opportunity Fund, Arch Cru Litigation, and Jackson v. Dear.
- Perpetual Media Capital v. Enevoldsen, (Royal Court of Guernsey). Acting for Plaintiff in US$10m claim against the former directors of the company for breaches of duty in making film finance loans.
- Suntech v. Wade: Drafted Expert Evidence of Cayman Law on directors’ duties for a successful motion to dismiss in Californian litigation.
- Plymouth Rock v. Lister: Drafted Expert Evidence of BVI Law on directors’ duties for Gibraltarian litigation.
Banking and Finance
- Advising a major private bank in respect of claims by Mr Picard as Trustee of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC re investments in the Fairfield Funds.
- Carlyle v. Conway: Acting for the liquidator of an SPV set up by The Carlyle Group to invest in RMBS in a US$1bn claim in the Royal Court of Guernsey against the directors, the parent companies and the investment manager.
- Chilean Investors v. ANZ: Acted in a claim for cUS$30m brought by 30 Chilean investors in respect of losses made on derivatives based on Russian National Debt.
- Parabola v. Man Financial Instructed for Man in this high-profile £90m trial in the English Commercial Court involving allegations of fraud, breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty.
- PPI Litigation (2009): Instructed on behalf of Barclays’ group companies in respect of claims brought by customers for alleged mis-selling of payment protection insurance.
- Finlan v. EMW (2007, English High Court, Ch D) Defending a £25m negligence claim brought against a firm of solicitors for an alleged failure to seek relevant information at the completion meeting of an MBO.
- BBX v. RBC: (FSD, Jones J) Successful application for a Florida bank’s SPV for a freezing injunction against a trustee and a luxury yacht, in support of a US$43m claim under the Cayman Islands’ Fraudulent Dispositions Law.
- Mizuho Bank v. Schahin (BVI Comm Court, Leon J) Successful application for an injunction to restrain the shareholders of a BVI company from wrongfully reversing acts taken by the Bank to enforce its security on a USD460m loan.
- Adamovsky v. Malitsky (EC (BVI) CA) Acting for the successful appellants in an appeal against an anti-enforcement injunction.