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Director in contempt of court

Company directors should be made aware of a High Court decision which highlights the potential penal consequences of a failure to comply with an injunction. The court held that two corporate defendants (and a director of both companies) were in contempt of court for failing to comply with an injunction that required the defendants to remove an estimated 3000 cigarette bins containing advertisements for the corporate defendants that had been erected without advertisement consent.

The injunction had been sought by the claimant council following the defendants’ failure to take any action to remove the advertisements, despite being found guilty of an offence in earlier criminal proceedings for displaying the advertisements without the council’s express consent. Although the judgment does not indicate the penalties ordered in this case, it is understood that all the defendants were fined and the director avoided a prison sentence. This is in contrast to the defendant company directors in a case a several months earlier, who were imprisoned for transferring company assets in breach of an injunction.

See our FAQs for further information about contempt and injunctions.

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