*Assuranceforeningen Gard Gjensidig v The International Oil Pollution Compensation Fund 1971

Practice – Pre-trial or post-judgment relief. The claimant brought claims in the United Kingdom and in Venezuela against the defendant International Oil Pollution Compensation Fund, seeking declarations that the defendant was liable to indemnify it in respect of its liability to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela for claims following an oil spill. The claimant sought freezing orders in respect of both the UK and the Venezuelan proceedings. The defendant contended that it had immunity from the grant of any freezing order under the International Oil Pollution Fund (Immunities and Privileges) Order 1979, SI 1979/912, (the Order). The Commercial Court held that the defendant did not have such immunity in relation to the English court proceedings. The immunity conferred under s 6(1) of the order was only granted if and to the extent that the 'suit or legal process' did not fall within one of the listed exceptions. Legal process included a freezing order. Therefore, the exceptions covered freezing orders. A freezing order was granted in respect of proceedings in the UK only.

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