IN THE HIGH COURT OF THE
HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION
COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE
ACTION NO 964 OF 2012
R U L I N G
1. As I have pointed out in paragraph 26 of my decision, the first and foremost objection raised by the plaintiff and the 1st defendantagainst the interpleader application of the 2nd defendant is that there are no adverse claims within the meaning of Order 17 rule1 in the special circumstances of this case.
2. I then dealt with, in paragraph 28, the evidence and those special circumstances and arrived at the conclusion that despite thereis no dispute between the plaintiff and the 1st defendant as to where the money should go, there are still adverse claims withinthe meaning of Order 17 rule 1 for the 2nd Defendant to engage the protective jurisdiction thereunder.
3. I think this case gives rise to an important jurisdictional issue, that is whether, in these special circumstances, the jurisdictionunder Order 17 is engaged or is capable of being engaged. It is, I think, in the interests of justice that this matter should bevisited by the Court of Appeal.
4. For this reason, I will give leave to the plaintiff and the 1st defendant to appeal against my decision.
(Submissions on costs)
5. Costs will be in the cause of the appeal. I agree with Mr Liu that Miss Eu is quite capable of dealing with the application withoutthe assistance of a junior. So I will refuse the application for certificate for two counsel.
Mr Jonathan Chang, instructed by Ng & Partners, for the plaintiff
Ms Audrey Eu SC leading Ms Tanie Toh, instructed by Ho Tse Wai, Philip Li & Partners, for the 1st defendant
Mr Harry Liu, instructed by Wilkinson & Grist, for the 2nd defendant