Call: 1997    
Conn MacEvilly  

"An experienced junior in insolvency cases"
Insolvency - Legal 500 2019

Practice Overview


Ranked in the Legal 500 as a leading junior, Conn is described as "a real pleasure to work with – a very proactive, hands-on barrister with in-depth knowledge of the law."

Conn is an experienced junior in commercial, company and insolvency cases, particularly those with multijurisdictional and offshore aspects.  He is a contributor to International Corporate Rescue and is called to the Bar in England, Ireland and Gibraltar.

An adviser and litigator with a strong sense of clients’ real strategic objectives, he brings commercial understanding from his experience as an employed barrister at Linklaters in London and as Head of Legal Services for PricewaterhouseCoopers Gibraltar. A former Government fast-streamer, Conn has also worked for the EC Legal Service in Brussels.

Having served as a troop leader in the 2003 Iraq war and as a mentor to the Afghan National Army in 2008, Conn is adept at working as part of a team under real pressure.

  • Commercial Litigation
    • Conn’s commercial chancery work includes contractual claims, claims based on breaches of fiduciary duty and claims by and against directors, He is also a trusted advisor in non-contentious commercial matters, drawing on his experience from the Department of Trade and Industry and Linklaters.

      Conn acted as junior in Global Energy Horizons Corporation v Gray [2015] EWHC 2232 (Ch) (28 July 2015), a factually complex claim initially valued at hundreds of millions of pounds for breach of fiduciary duties in relation to an opportunity which the Claimant had been pursuing to exploit ultrasound technology to increase the production and recoverability of oil and gas reserves.

      Conn is regularly instructed in commercial disputes at an early stage, enabling him to provide timely input to produce a cost-effective result for the client. For example, he acted under Direct Access on behalf of a newspaper publisher in a multi-million pound commercial dispute concerning misrepresentation in the sale of a business which settled very successfully.

      Conn has substantial experience, both acting as junior to leading counsel and as sole counsel, in obtaining and resisting various forms of interim relief, including:

      • Norwich Pharmacal/third party disclosure orders
      • Freezing and ancillary disclosure orders
      • Search orders
      • Summary judgment/strike out applications
  • Company
    • Conn has wide experience in company matters, including:

      • Claims against directors
      • Shareholder disputes
      • Claims by and against directors
      • Claims to set aside transactions of insolvent companies
      • Disputes relating to share sale agreements 

      He also has plentiful experience as an advisor in non-contentious company-related matters, including advising on:

      • Regulatory matters  
      • Shareholder agreements
      • Share sale agreements
  • Insolvency
    • Conn is recommended by Legal 500 as a leading junior in insolvency. He is a contributor to International Corporate Rescue.

      "A real pleasure to work with – a very proactive, hands-on barrister with in-depth knowledge of the law"   Legal 500 2015 - Insolvency 

      He has a particular interest in cross-border insolvency matters, advising on and appearing in applications relating to overseas insolvency proceedings.

      Among his recent cases of note are:  

      • Re Hellas Communications (Luxembourg) II SCA [2014] B.P.I.R. 179.  An important decision on the powers of administrators to agree the fees of professional advisors
      • Re MG Engineering & Consultancy Limited (2014 – unreported). The first time the Cross-Border Insolvency Regulations was availed of, rather than section 426 of the Insolvency Act 1986, to achieve recognition by the English High Court of Gibraltar insolvency proceedings
      • Popham v Information Governance Limited [2013] EWHC 2611 (Ch).  An application for administration by a director of a company which involved day-long argument about the solvency of the company.  The judge ultimately accepted Conn’s arguments as to the insolvency of the company, only declining to order administration on the basis of assurances from very recently re-appointed directors that they would fund the company.
  • Offshore
    • Conn has acted as junior and alone in a number of disputes involving offshore jurisdictions, including two as a junior before the Privy Council.  He was called to the Bar of Gibraltar in 2005 and practised there for five years – two as a litigator and three as in-house counsel.  He has managed large-scale defensive Madoff-related litigation in New York and Gibraltar.  He also led the Gibraltar end of negotiations and drafting of a US$17bn debt standstill agreement for a Russian entity with Cyprus, Gibraltar and BVI involvement.

      He has been called to the Bar of Ireland and took his undergraduate degree there.

      A French and German speaker, he has studied law at the University of Paris and worked at the European Commission in Brussels; he is completely at home working in a multinational team and dealing with foreign experts (including experts on foreign law). 

  • Regulatory and Business Crime
    • Conn has extensive experience of advising on the practical aspects of regulation and business crime from the perspectives of the private and public sectors.

      As a legal adviser to the Department for Trade and Industry, Conn drafted subordinate legislation relating to consumer policy and advised on the regulation of electronic commerce. 

      As a lawyer in the Competition team at Linklaters, he was involved in advising on the regulation of mergers and illegal cartels. He attended dawn raids concerning suspected anti-competitive conduct, providing on-the-spot advice on privilege.  He also advised on utilities regulation, particularly where it overlapped with e-commerce.

      As head of legal services at PricewaterhouseCoopers Gibraltar, Conn advised in relation to money laundering regulation under Gibraltarian, English and Irish law.  He also advised on compliance with international sanctions and was involved in high-profile international litigation involving allegations of fraud.

      He has extensive experience as junior counsel in cases involving allegations of fraud, bribery and deceit against former company directors and persons owing fiduciary obligations to companies.

  • Additional Information

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