Penelope Reed QC instructed by Baker & Partners in successful appeal to Jersey Court of Appeal in Crociani trusts litigation

Penelope Reed QC was instructed by Jersey firm Baker & Partners in a successful appeal to the Jersey Court of Appeal arising out of a lengthy trial in 2017, in which Penelope Reed QC and Jordan Holland were instructed by Baker & Partners on behalf of BNP Paribas Jersey Trust Corporation Ltd (“BNP Jersey”). The trial concerned disputed dealings with a family trust and trust assets of the Crociani family, originating with a Bahamian Grand Trust settled in 1987 by a Mme Crociani in the form of two separate trusts for her daughters Camilla and Cristiana and containing a valuable portfolio of investments and works of art. After the trial the Royal Court required the reconstitution of trust funds of over £100M in value.

In its judgment of 25 July 2018, the Jersey Court of Appeal allowed the appeal of BNP Jersey, as a trustee of the Grand Trust, in respect of equitable compensation calculated by reference to the value required to fully reconstitute the trusts of both of Mme Crociani’s daughters. BNP Jersey successfully argued that they should only be obliged to reconstitute Cristiana’s trust. The Court of Appeal considered the factual history, the relevant provisions of the trust instrument and Jersey law, as well as equitable principles derived from English authorities before holding, in an exercise of its equitable discretion, that “to reconstitute Camilla’s fund just to allow a windfall to Cristiana and her family would be to punish BNP Jersey”.

Link to the judgment can be found below.