brett 1 SC

Member Type:
Senior Counsel

Granting of Silk:
1997

Qualifications:
B.A LL.B (WITS)

Areas of Practice:
He has specialised in company law, insolvency law and administrative law. He has generally been briefed in cases involving constitutional, banking, insurance, labour, income tax, mining and intellectual property law.

Experience:

Prior to being called to the Bar in 1977, he served his articles of clerkship at a leading Johannesburg firm of attorneys.

He was awarded senior counsel status in 1997 when he received his Letters patent.

He has appeared as counsel or consulted on brief in several countries outside the Republic of South Africa including Swaziland, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho, Hong Kong, United Kingdom and the USA.

He has since 1997 regularly acted as a judge in the High Court in Johannesburg and Pretoria.

He has received appointments to act as an arbitrator in domestic arbitrations and has received appointments to act as a commissioner in respect of enquiries into the affairs of domestic private and public companies.  He has appeared regularly in all the divisions of the High Court in South Africa, including the Supreme Court of Appeal and Constitutional Court.

He has appeared in more than 95 reported cases the most significant of which are referred to in part “A” below.

As an acting judge, he has also delivered numerous judgments of which the most significant may also be referred to in part “B” below.

The profile of his practice covers a large spectrum of commercial matters specialising in company law, insolvency law, administrative law, constitutional law, corporate mergers and acquisitions; schemes of arrangement and regulatory work.

He has regularly appeared as the lead counsel for the Registrar of Medical Schemes and for the Council for Medical Schemes (the Regulatory Authorities for the registration and control of Medical Schemes in South Africa).

In the early 1990’s he was involved in the Masterbond bankruptcy and more particularly in the litigation and the scheme of arrangement relating to the sale of the Fancourt Resort situated outside George in the Cape.  This bankruptcy was considered at the time to be the most publicised and largest group liquidation ever in South Africa.

In 2005 he represented the Securities Regulation Panel and the Chairman of its Executive Committee as the Lead Counsel in the attempt by Harmony Gold Mine to acquire the entire issued share capital of Goldfields Limited.

In 2006/2009 he was involved as senior counsel in the bankruptcy of the Macmed Group of companies (which included some 90 subsidiary companies) which was then referred to “… as the biggest commercial collapse in the history of South Africa.”

He has been the lead counsel in a number of leading cases both under the old Companies Act, Act No 61 of 1973 and under the new Companies Act, Act 71 of 2008, more particularly relating to Business Rescue, Insider Trading, Market Abuse and in the interpretation of the provisions of both the old and new Companies Act.

He has been involved as lead counsel in opposing various and separate class actions brought on behalf of thousands of investors against directors and other individuals in relation to the affairs of numerous companies involved in property-syndication groups involving tens of billions of rands.

He has recently appeared on behalf of several minority shareholders against the erstwhile directors and auditors of African Bank which had then been placed under curatorship by the South African Reserve Bank.  This litigation is currently proceeding.

He has also represented minority shareholders in other actions against delinquent directors for damages caused to such shareholders.

He is currently the lead counsel in the class action against the Steinhoff group of companies, their auditors, directors and investment bankers for shareholders’ losses in the region of R185 Billion Rand.

Reported and Noteworthy Cases (appeared as counsel)

  • Bragge v Douglasdale Dairy 2018(4) SA 409 (GJ)
  • Douglasdale Dairy v Bragge 2018(4) SA 425 (SCA)
  • Genesis Medical Aid Scheme v Registrar, Medical Schemes & Another 2017(6) SA 1 (CC)
  • Mohamed’s Leisure Holdings (Pty) Ltd v Southern Sun Hotel Interests (Pty) Ltd 2017(4) SA 243 (GJ)
  • Ombud for Financial Services Providers v Harms NO 2017 JDR 0315 (GP)
  • Crisp & Others v Sharemax Investments (Pty) Ltd & Others (1939/15) [2017] ZAGPPHC 737 (22 November 2017)
  • Moriting Life Administrators Ltd (In liquidation) v Centriq Life Insurance Company (CF) Ltd & Another (11686/2015) [2017] ZAGPPHC 833 (27 February 2017)
  • Registrar of Medical Schemes & Another v Genesis Medical Scheme 2016(6) SA 472 (SCA)
  • Mbethe v United Manganese of Kalahari (Pty) Ltd 2016(5) SA 414 (GJ)
  • Moto Health Care Medical Scheme v Muller NO & Others (18152/2013) [2016] ZAGPPHC 298 (8 March 2016)
  • Nova Property Group Holdings Ltd & Others v Cobbett & Another 2016(4) SA 317 (SCA)
  • Geldenhuys & Others v Orthotouch Ltd & Others – In re Highveld Syndication Investors v Orthotouch Ltd (42334/2014) [2016] ZAGPHC 162 (25 May 2016)
  • Moto Health Care Medical Scheme v Muller NO & Others (18152/2013) [2016] ZAGPPHC 298 (8 March 2016)
  • Kingdom Films & Others v Kaplan NO (14/43457) [2016] ZAGPJHC 37 (7 March 2016)
  • Geldenhuys & Others v Orthotouch Ltd & Others – In re Highveld Syndication Investors v Orthotouch Ltd (42334/2014) [2016] ZAGPHC 233 (1 September          2016)
  • Citiconnect Business Solutions v City Manager of the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality NO & Others (82542/2014) [2015] ZAGPPHC 115 (4    March 2015)
  • Bestmed Medical Scheme & Others v Council for Medical Schemes & Another (82516/14) [2015] ZAGPPHC 268 (13 February 2015)
  • Moto Health Care Medical Scheme v Muller NO & Others (18152/2013) [2015] ZAGPPHC 621; [2015] All SA 485 (GP) (4 September 2015)
  • HMI Healthcare Corporation v Medshield Medical Scheme (A448/2014) [2016] ZAGPPHC 580 (10 June 2016)
  • Zietsman & Another v Directorate of Market Abuse & Another 2016(1) SA 218 (GP)
  • Genesis Medical Scheme v Registrar of Medical Schemes & Another 2015(4) SA 91 (WCC)
  • Amdocs SA Joint Enterprise (Pty) Ltd v Kwezi Technologies (Pty) Ltd 2014(5) SA 532 (GJ)
  • Newcity Group (Pty) Ltd v Pellow NO & Others (577/2013) [2014] ZASCA 162 (1 October 2014)
  • Genesis Medical Scheme v Ngalwana NO & Others (2639/2011) [2014] ZAGPPHC 13 (11 February 2014)
  • Gijima Holdings (Pty) Ltd v Isiqina Property Holdings (Pty) Ltd 25008/2011) [2014] ZAGPPHC 171 (2 April 2014)
  • Absa Bank Ltd v Cohen 2014 JDR 2189 (GJ)
  • Butler v Van Zyl 2014 KDR 1139 (SCA)
  • Oakdene Square Properties (Pty) Ltd & Others v Farm Bothasfontein (Kyalami) (Pty) Ltd & Others 2013(4) SA 539 (SCA)
  • Absa Bank Ltd v Newcity Group (Pty) Ltd & Another [2013] 3 All SA 146 (GSJ)
  • Van Zyl v Nuco Chrome Bophutatswana (Pty) Ltd & Others (43825/2012) [2013] ZAGPJHC 40 (13 March 2013)
  • Newcity Group (Pty) Ltd v Pellow NO & Others, China Construction Bank Corporation Johannesburg Branch v Crystal Lagoon Investments 53 (Pty) Ltd     & Others (12/45437, 16566/12) [2013] ZAGPJHC 54 (28 March 2013)
  • Hanley v Absa Bank Limited [2012] 4 All SA 318 (GNP)
  • Tecmed Africa (Pty) Ltd v The Minister of Health & Another [2012] 4 All SA 149 (SCA)
  • Muller NO & Another v Community Medical Aid Scheme 2012(2) SA 286 (SCA)
  • Oakdene Square Properties (Pty) Ltd & Others v Farm Bothasfontein (Kyalami) (Pty) Ltd & Others; Farm Bothasfontein (Kyalami) (Pty) Ltd v Kyalami Events and Exhibitions (Pty) Ltd & Others 2012(3) SA 273 (GSJ)
  • Killik v Investec Bank Ltd (261/12) [2012] ZAGPJHC 265 (30 August 2012)
  • Bonitas Medical Fund & Others v Registrar of Medical Schemes & Others (33735/10) [2011] ZAGPJHC 61 (27 May 2011)
  • Aeronexus (Pty) Ltd v Firstrand Bank LTd t/a Wesbank (249/2010) [2011] ZASCA 21 (17 March 2011)
  • Mogale Alloys (Pty) Ltd v Nuco Chrome Bophuthatswana (Pty) Ltd & Others 2011 (6) SA 96 (GSJ)
  • V Medical Administrators (Pty) Ltd & Another v Jaques & Others (2010/46241) [2010] ZAGPJHC 131 (9 December 2010)
  • Muller NNO v Community Medical Aid Scheme (09/549) [2010] ZAGPJHC 31 (30 April 2010)
  • Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd v The Master of the High Court & Others 2009(5) SA 13 ( E)
  • Nedbank Ltd v Pestana 2009(2) SA 189 (SCA)
  • Absa Bank Ltd v McCrae 2009 JDR 0782 (GSJ)
  • Registrar of Medical Schemes v Solvita Medical Scheme (2008/02548) [2009] ZAGPJHC 43 (24 April 2009)
  • Bingo (KZN) (Pty) Ltd & Another v The Premier, KwaZulu-Natal Province & Others [2008] 4 All SA 416 (N)
  • Pestana v Nedbank Ltd 2008(3) SA 466 (W)
  • Intramed (Pty) Ltd (In liquidation) & Another v Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd & Others 2008(2) SA 466 (SCA)
  • Danielz NO v De Wet & Another, De Wet v Danielz NO & Another [2008] 4 All SA 549 (C)
  • Thema v Law Society of the Northern Provinces & Others (917/2007) [2007] ZAGPHC 184 (7 September 2007)
  • Registrar of Medical Schemes v Gen-Health Medical Scheme & Others (35473/2005) [2007] ZAGPHC 101 (15 June 2007)
  • Fourie NO v Le Roux & Others 2006(1) SA 279 (T)
  • Kap International Holdings Ltd v Land Bank (32486/2005) [2006] ZAGPHC 166 (7 April 2006)
  • Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd v Master of the High Court & Others (535/2005) [2006] ZAECHC 53 (26 October 2006)
  • Standard Bank of South Africa Ltd v Master of the High Court & Others (535/2005, 41/2006) [2006] ZAECHC 33 (27 July 2006)
  • Le Roux & Others v Honourable Magistrate & Others (16013/05) [2006] ZAGPHC 63 (22 June 2016)
  • Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals (Pty) Ltd v Novartis SA (Pty) Ltd & Another [2005] 4 All SA 453 (W)
  • Hosmed Medical Aid Scheme & Others v Kalipa & Others [2005] 4 All SA 208 (T)
  • Gold Fields Ltd v Connellan NO & Others [2005] 3 All SA 142 (W)
  • Nissan South Africa (Pty) Ltd v Marnitz NO & Others (Stand 186 Aeroport (Pty) Ltd Intervening) 2005(1) SA 441 (SCA)
  • ICC Car Importers (Pty) Ltd v A Hartrodt SA (Pty) Ltd 2004(4) SA 607 (W)
  • Welihockyj & Others v Advtech Ltd & Others 2003(6) SA 737 (W)
  • Hudson & Others NNO v Wilkins NO & Others 2003(6) SA 234 (T)
  • Akasia Road Surfacing (Pty) Ltd & ‘n Ander v Shoredits Holdings Ltd & Andere 2002(3) SA 346 (SCA)
  • Nel & Others NNO v The Master & Others 2002(3) SA 354 (SCA)
  • Tigon Ltd v Bestyet Investments (Pty) Ltd 2001(4) SA 634 (N)
  • First National Bank of Southern Africa Ltd v Perry NO & Others 2001(3) SA 960 (SCA)
  • Glofinco v Absa Bank Ltd (t/a United Bank) & Others 2001(2) SA 1048 (W)
  • Muller v De Wet NO & Others 2001(2) SA 489 (W)
  • Strauss & Others v The Master & Others NNO 2001(1) SA 649 (T)
  • Dorbyl Vehicle Trading & Finance Company (Pty) Ltd v Northern Cape Tour & Charter Services CC [2001] 1 All SA 118 (NC)
  • Kerbyn 178 (Pty) Ltd v Van Den Heever & Others NNO 2000(4) SA 804 (W)
  • Strauss & Others v Master of the High Court & Others [2000] 3 All SA 587 (T)
  • Nel & Others NNO v The Master & Others 2000(2) SA 728 (W)
  • Cuyler & Another v Shiers & Another; Cuyler v C & S Marketing & Others 1999(3) SA 118 (W)
  • Muller v De Wet NO & Others 1999(2) SA 1024 (W)
  • Lappeman Diamond Cutting Works (Pty) Ltd v MIB Group (Pty) Ltd (No 2) 1997(4) SA 921 (W)
  • Lappeman Diamond Cutting Works (Pty) Ltd v MIB Group (Pty) Ltd (No 1) 1997(4) SA 908 (W)
  • Fittinghoff & Others v Hollins; Fittinghoff & Others v Stockton 1997(1) SA 535 (W)
  • Purnell v Purnell 1993(2) SA 662 (A)
  • Wilson-Yelverton v Sharman t/a Wanga Investments & Another 1992(1) SA          80 (T)
  • Total South Africa (Pty) Ltd v Bekker NO 1992(1) SA 617 (A)
  • De Villiers NO v Delta Cables (Pty) Ltd 1992(1) SA 9 (A)
  • McLean v Morgan 1991(4) SA 508 (D)
  • Philip Business Services CC v De Villiers & Others NNO 1991(3) SA 552 (W)
  • Grufin Finance Co (Pty) Ltd v Cohen & Others NNO 1991(2) SA 345 (W)
  • Blaas v Athanassiou 1991(1) SA 723 (W)
  • Willowvale Estates CC & Another v Bryanmore Estates Ltd 1990(3) SA 954 (W)
  • Levi v Almog 1990(1) SA 541 (W)
  • Greaves v Opta Medical Co 1989(1) SA 993 (W)
  • Judson Timber Co (Pty) Ltd v Ronnie Bass & Co (Pty) Ltd & Another 1985(4) SA 531 (W)
  • Horty Investments (Pty) Ltd. v Interior Acoustics (Pty) Ltd 1984(3) SA 537 (W)
  • Grauman v Grauman 1984(3) SA 477 (W)
  • Deeb v Pinter; Shane & Stoler v Munro -Schott t/a House of Bernadi 1984(2) SA 507 (W)
  • Commissioner for Inland Revenue v Modified Investments (Pty) Ltd 1982(1) SA 331 (T)

 

Judgments Given (Acting Judge)

  • Cadac v Weber-Stephen Products & Others – Case 30677/04 – Delivered 11 March 2009
  • Cadac v Weber-Stephen Products & Others – 2011(3) SA 570 (SCA) – Delivered 4 February 2010
  • P C Swanepoel v MLS Bank Limited & Absa Group Limited – Case 27158/2003 – Delivered 29 April 2004
  • Calfort Investments v Lyceum – Case 11210/08 – Delivered 9 February 2009
  • Midi Television (Pty) Ltd v Franchise Brokers – Case A3102/03 – Delivered24 August 2004
  • Verimark Holdings v H M Sayed – Case 27040/03 – Delivered 2 April 2004
  • Media Interventions v South African Airways & Another – Case 33071/2007
  • Northview Shopping Centre v Revelas Properties JHB & Another – Case 21815/08 – Delivered 4 March 2009
  • Northview Shopping Centre v Revelas Properties JHB & Another 2010(3) SA 630 (SCA) – Delivered 7 May 2009
  • Contract Support Services (Pty) Ltd & Others v Commissioner for the South African Revenue Services & Others 1999(3) SA 113 (W)

Contact Details:
Email: brett@law.co.za
Phone: 082-553-6499