The claimant, Mrs Fari, fell over a cracked paving stone and suffered a lower limb injury that, it was alleged, caused significant mobility problems. She also signed a Schedule of Loss which totalled £740,000.
The defendant obtained surveillance evidence and on the basis of the footage, both parties’ medical experts agreed that 'the claimant significantly exaggerated her disability on both occasions she was examined'. The defendant’s expert added that 'the claimant had deliberately exaggerated her disability with the intention to deceive'.
The defendant, on the day of the trial, asked for the claim to be struck out due to an abuse of process since the claimant had signed a statement of truth in the knowledge that it was false. The judge agreed that the sum claimed in the schedule was 'outrageous' and a 'grossly distorted view of what the claim was worth'.
While Judge Mitchell acknowledged that strike out would be draconian, he commented that false or exaggerated claims are costing a fortune and should not be allowed to continue.
The decision is of particular significance because it is the first strike out of a fraudulent/exaggerated claim following the Supreme Court’s ruling in Summers v Fairclough Homes Limited  1 WLR 2004. Summers is authority for the proposition that under CPR 3.4(2) the court has power to strike out a statement of case on the ground that it is an abuse of process at any stage in the proceedings including - in very exceptional circumstances - at the end of a trial.
The defendant is now taking the matter further against Mrs Fari in the High Court.