Fountain Court Chambers

London & Singapore

The Queen (on the application of Deripaska) v Director of Public Prosecutions: Richard Lissack QC and Leonora Sagan resist application for Judicial Review

Richard Lissack QC and Leonora Sagan have successfully resisted an application by Oleg Deripaska for permission to judicially review the DPP’s decision to take over and discontinue the private prosecution of their client, Vladimir Chernukhin.

Mr Deripaska’s attempt to challenge the DPP’s decision comes after he instituted a private prosecution alleging that Mr Chernukhin had perverted the course of public justice by relying on false documents during the course of bitterly fought arbitration and Commercial Court proceedings between the two men over the rightful ownership of a valuable site in  central Moscow. In February 2019, Teare J held that Mr Chernukhin was the rightful owner and ordered Mr Deripaska to pay more than $95 million in return for his shares.

Rejecting Mr Deripaska’s claim, Mrs Justice Tipples DBE agreed with Sir Ross Cranston, who had refused permission on the papers on the basis that “the claimant’s private prosecution had all the hallmark of a party in the civil courts continuing the battle in the criminal courts”. The case therefore provides salutary guidance to those, particularly private clients, considering the use of the criminal justice system for collateral purposes.