Case Summaries

Denis Chandratheepam Latimer and another v Quah Beng Hoe and three others

SUPREME COURT OF SINGAPORE

3 November 2017

Media Summary       

Suit No 1172 of 2016

Denis Chandratheepam Latimer and another v Quah Beng Hoe and three others

1                    This suit concerned 13 paintings that the plaintiffs had purchased from the defendants. The 13 paintings were sold as works by Indonesian master artists and purchased by the plaintiffs for investment purposes. Seven paintings were purchased from the 2nd defendant, Dahlia Gallery LLP, a limited liability partnership of the third and fourth defendants, and the remaining six paintings were purchased from the 1st defendant.

2                    The plaintiffs claimed that all the 13 paintings were not authentic. They sued the 1st and 2nd defendants for breach of contract, seeking recession of the contracts of sale and purchase and a refund of the purchase price of the paintings. The plaintiffs also sued the 3rd and 4th defendants, alleging that they had made misrepresentations as to the authenticity of the six paintings that the 2nd defendant had sold to the plaintiffs.  

Judgment

3                    The High Court found that the 13 paintings were not authentic. The court also found that both the 3rd and 4th defendants had misrepresented to the plaintiffs that the seven paintings sold by the 2nd defendant were authentic. Further, the court found that the 3rd defendant was liable for fraudulent misrepresentation; whereas the 4th defendant was liable for negligent misrepresentation.  

4                    The court accordingly granted a declaration that the contracts for the purchase of the 13 paintings had been rescinded, and ordered the plaintiffs to return the 13 paintings to the 1st and 2nd defendants respectively. The court further held that the defendants were liable to the plaintiffs for damages, and awarded the same to the plaintiffs.

This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It is not intended to be a substitute for the reasons of the Court.

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