These orders are forms of interlocutory injunctive reliefs which derive the name from a case decided in UK in 1976 by the name of ANTON PILLER K.G. vs Manufacturing Processes Ltd (1976) Ch. 55  - this was a court of appeal decision, Lord Denning was involved in the decisions.  Facts:  the plaintiffs were German Manufacturers of electric motors and generators.  One of their products was a frequency converter for use in computers.  The defendants were the plaintiffs UK agents.  Two defectors employed by the defendants flew to Germany and informed the plaintiffs that the defendants had been secretly negotiating with the Plaintiff’s competitors with the object of supplying the competitors with manuals, drawings and other confidential information which would allow the competitor to copy the plaintiffs products and ruin their market.  The plaintiffs were worried that if the defendant were given notice of court proceedings they would destroy or remove incriminating evidence, so before they had time even to issue the writ in the contemplated proceedings the plaintiffs solicitors applied exparte which was granted on appeal to the court of appeal that the defendant do permit such persons to enter forthwith the premises of the defendants for the purpose of (a) inspecting all documents relating  and (b) removal  of the articles and documents from the defendant’s custody.

When one applies for anton piller the court must be convinced the case is strong cause the nature of the order is draconian.

Principles of Anton Piller
Application ex parte supported by affidavit
Court sits in camera
Application made after issue or a writ in UK where urgent application can be made before issue.   Sometimes Mareva and Anton Pillar can be compared
Piling Piller upon Mareva – this cannot be done in Kenya but in the UK it is possible, asking the court to enter premises remove incriminating evidence and ask the court that the defendant should not move the assets from jurisdiction.

1.            There must be extremely strong prima facie case on merit;
2.            Defendants activities must cause very serious potential or act of harm to the plaintiff’s interests.

There must be clear evidence that incriminating evidence or things are in the defendant’s possession and that there is real possibility that such material may be destroyed before any application inter parties can be made.
Since it is ex parte – usual requirements of disclosure of material facts apply
Polygram Music Stores v East Africa Music Stores H.C. C.C. No. 285 of 1981f
East Africa Software Limited v Microskills Computer Ltd

Anton Piller Order can be granted in Kenya under the © Act, section 3A of the civil procedure act and Order 40 Rule 10. It is very common in music piracy cases where people are involved in breach of © of other peoples works. 

In UK one has to serve an order by a solicitor, serve defendant with a written order, the solicitor has to oversee the exercise, there must be a motion for purpose of representation in court.  there is a detailed procedure to be followed in the UK and other orders that are supposed to accompany the Anton Piller, the order must be served and supervised by a solicitor other than the one acting for plaintiff, order to be served on weekday to give the defendant time to seek legal advice, if it is a woman living alone,  the order must be executed in the presence of a responsible officer of the corporation if it is a corporation,   the defendant given right to seek legal advise before complying with the order.  A list of the items must be prepared before items are removed from the premises.  All these are auxiliary made by the court.

In Kenya it is by way of suit and the application if by Chamber Summons requesting for the Anton Piller Order. There should be secrecy, undertakings from counsel and client and the advocate must personally give an undertaking.  The courts may give directions as to how it must be executed for the purpose of defending the defendant.


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