Jeans v Cleary [2006] NSWSC 647

In this case a property development went badly wrong and the CBA who loaned the construction finance went after the property developer on his personal guarantee. He sought in the Federal Court to have the guarantee set aside on the grounds of misrepresentation by the bank. In affidavits and pleadings in the Federal Court he admitted the guarantee signature was his.

The Federal Court proceedings were decided for the bank and so the Property Developer then brought these proceedings against the bank officer alleging he forged his signature. The bank officer sought to have the proceedings struck out and failed, then appealed, where it failed again. This decision was the trial on the issue of the forgery and alleged deceit by the bank officer.

After hearing from the experts and fully considering the “tapered anti-clockwise terminal spur” on the specimen signature in the end the case was decided upon the lack of credibility of the property developer who although of sound demeanor in the witness box convinced the judge he was not to be believed because he gave different accounts of the same events to suit his purposes.

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