Christian Toms is a partner in the Litigation Practice Group. Christian focuses his practice on complex financial arrangements and investment disputes, as well as joint venture, director and shareholder disputes. His previous experience at the Criminal Bar also gives him an invaluable insight when advising on financial regulatory matters.

    Christian advocates on behalf of individuals and corporations spanning the financial service, technology, construction, sports and pharmaceutical industries. He has particular experience representing investment and commercial banks, hedge funds and other financial entities both locally and internationally.

    In 2020, Her Majesty The Queen appointed Christian as a Recorder on the recommendation of the Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales. Since then, he has served as a Recorder (Deputy Circuit Judge) in addition to maintaining his practice.

    Christian is an avid proponent of pro bono initiatives and, despite his robust caseload, continuously volunteers his services to individuals with limited means within his community. Over the years, he has led numerous efforts to provide legal assistance to those who are most in need, including directing a charitable foundation and public interest programme at his previous firm.

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    • Acted for an international investment banking firm in a claim arising from an equity trading dispute with a Bermudian entity.
    • Acted in ICC arbitration proceedings on behalf of a Middle Eastern bank in a dispute with a European bank.
    • Advised a special servicer within an insolvent CMBS structure in respect of potential claims concerning secured assets for the benefit of noteholders.
    • Advised in connection with freezing injunctions and related issues arising out of legal actions being pursued by a Russian bank.
    • Advised a Cayman-based investment manager in respect of holdings in an Irish listed company and related litigation proceedings before the Irish High Court.
    • Advised an investment fund in respect of disputed contractual entitlements under notes acquired pursuant to the terms of a CMBS issue.
    • Advised a US fund in relation to hybrid instruments issued in Italy.
    • Acted for noteholders in “tranche warfare” proceedings before the English High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court concerning the “balance sheet insolvency test” and English securitisations.
    • Advised an investment fund in respect of a potential Cayman dispute arising out of a purported in specie redemption.
    • Acted for a Middle East-based family investment vehicle in a dispute with a global investment bank arising from losses suffered through investments in a hedge fund portfolio.
    • Acted for an investment bank in a contractual claim for recovery of an acquisition success fee.
    • Acted for Dutch pension fund, Pensioenfonds Vervoer, and related parties, in a professional negligence claim against Goldman Sachs Asset Management International for damages in the region of €250 million.
    • Advised a US fund in relation to potential claims under a trade confirmation against an Icelandic bank and an international investment bank.
    • Acted for an Austrian investment firm in a dispute with a US bank arising out of a high grade CDO transaction.
    • Advised a financial services company on potential warranty claims arising out of its acquisition of a pensions investment/advisory business.
    • Advised in a fraud/banking litigation matter, and coordinating activity in Barbados, Ireland, Australia, Singapore and Indonesia.
    • Acted (both at first instance and on appeal) in a successful strike-out of a claim for dishonest assistance.
    • Acted for an individual in a High Court challenge to a US Letter of Request seeking oral evidence for use in US proceedings.
    • Advised an individual subject to an investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority.
    • Advised a fund in the context of a potential investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority.
    • Advised a global pharma business with operations in India, Europe, Hong Kong and the US in relation to joint venture disputes with shareholder/directors.
    • Advised the joint administrators of a former high-street telecommunications provider as to the existence of potential claims related to the insolvency of the business.
    • Acted in a joint venture dispute subject to ICC arbitration in Vienna involving various jurisdictions, including the BVI, Croatia and Malta.
    • Advised on a joint venture dispute concerning interests in England and Argentina.
    • Advised in a real estate joint venture dispute.
    • Advised a health and wellbeing charity in a dispute arising out of event cancellations occurring during a pandemic.
    • Acted for a charitable organisation in a construction dispute adjudication.
    • Acted in a dispute arising out of the acquisition of a global food franchise business.
    • Acted for a client in urgent injunctive proceedings in respect of proceedings involving Rhode Island, New York, US Federal Bankruptcy, and English law.
    • Advised on potential judicial review proceedings against the Welsh Assembly and Welsh Audit Office.
    • Acted in proceedings brought by a client in the textile industry for repudiatory breach of a services contract.
    • Acted for a founder shareholder of an online beauty business in respect of a share value dispute with fellow shareholders/directors.
    • Advised a client with operations in Russia in respect of a franchise dispute with a global fast-food brand. The matter was governed by ICC arbitration and involved consideration of the impact of geopolitical events in Russia and Ukraine.
    • Acted for various individuals in connection with derogatory and defamatory statements posted by various other individuals on online bulletin boards.
    • Acted for AIM-listed entities and their related group companies in connection with commercial disputes and internal director/shareholder matters.
    • Appeared as co-counsel in an LCIA arbitration on behalf of an LLP in a dispute with one of its members over termination rights.
    • Acted for an entity with specific territorial rights to a global food franchise brand in a dispute with certain of its shareholders and an international investment bank.
    • Acted for a Canadian mining company in a HKIAC arbitration dispute with its Chinese joint venture partner over an energy project in Botswana.
    • Acted for one of the largest coal producers in the world in a joint venture dispute relating to a mining project in Mongolia.
    • Acted for a leading car insurance brand in a joint venture dispute with its partner, a leading UK food retailer.
    • Advised a company involved in running global motor sport events on the defence of a threatened claim in the region of €2 million to €3 million.
    • Acted for one of the construction companies responsible for upgrading key parts of the London underground rail network in an £11 million claim that went to adjudication.
    • Acted for IPCO (Nigeria) Limited in a matter involving proceedings in the English High Court, Court of Appeal and House of Lords concerning the enforcement of a New York Convention arbitration award, valued at over US$200 million, obtained by IPCO in Nigeria in late 2004. (IPCO (Nigeria) Limited v Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)).

    Education

    • St. Catherine's College, Oxford, M.A., (Oxon), 2005
    • Inns of Court School of Law, Bar Vocational Course, 2001
    • St. Catherine's College, Oxford, B.A., with honours, 2000

    Admissions

    • England and Wales (recorder), 2020
    • England and Wales (solicitor), 2011
    • England and Wales (barrister), 2001

    Memberships and Affiliations

    • Member, International Bar Association
    • Member, International Association of Young Lawyers
    • Committee Member, Commercial Litigator’s Forum
    • Recognised for Banking Litigation: Investment & Retail by The Legal 500 UK 2014-2022
    • Recognised for Commercial Litigation by The Legal 500 UK 2014-2022
    • Recognised in the Fraud: Civil category of The Legal 500 2021

    • Author, “Identity ‘Cat and mouse’ on the blockchain”, Fraud Intelligence, 22 March 2022.
    • Panellist, "Virtual Round Table – Litigation & Dispute Resolution 2022", Corporate LiveWire, 18 March 2022.
    • Quoted, “Consolidation and centralization: How Europe’s new AML regulation will affect crypto”, Cointelegraph, 11 March 2022.
    • Author, "What exactly is an NFT", FT Advisor, 28 February 2022.
    • Panellist, “Spotlight on Cyber Fraud: Inside the Latest Techniques for Combatting Systemic and Aggressive Cyber and Ransomware Campaigns”, ACI/C5’s Fraud, Asset Tracing & Recovery Conference, 15 January 2022.
    • Roundtable speaker, “Litigation Funding As An Alternative Asset Class”, Private Equity Europe Forum, 14 September 2021.
    • Contributing author, “The Law and Business of Litigation Funding”, Woodsford Litigation Funding, 21 January 2021.
    • Chapter author, “Litigation & Dispute Resolution, England & Wales”, Global Legal Insights, 2019 and 2020.
    • Co-author, “The Role of Artificial Intelligence and Technology in Global Bankruptcy and Restructuring Practices”, INSOL International, July 2019.
    • Panellist, "Prepare for the future: Emerging hot topics", INSOL International One Day Seminar in Tokyo, 7 November 2019.
    • Author, “Compulsion to mediate – providing access to mandatory cross-border mediation services”, Lexis Nexis, 22 March 2017.
    • Speaker, “Use of: capable technology; the legal risks from a cyber attack and the use of ‘fruit from a poisoned tree’“, InfoLine’s Asset Tracing & Recovery Forum, 31 October 2017.
    • Panellist, “Gaining Clients Acceptance for Litigation Funding”, Litigation Funding 2017 Conference, 2 October 2017.
    • Panellist, “AI in the World of a Litigator”, AIJA Annual Congress, 28 August-1 September 2017.

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