Brief Fact Summary. Defendant shot at natives in order to deter them from trading with Plaintiffs. Plaintiffs sued Defendant for interfering with their prospective advantage.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. A cause of action is permissible for interference with prospective economic advantage.
Issue. Is a cause of action permissible for interference with prospective economic advantage?
Held. Yes. Judgment for Plaintiffs.
* This injury complained of is, that by the improper conduct of Defendant the natives were prevented from trading with Plaintiffs. It has been said that a person engaged in a trade violating the law of the country cannot support an action against another for hindering him in that illegal trade. The rule does not apply to this case. The king of the country and not Defendant should have executed the law. It is proved that Defendant had expressed an intention not to permit any to trade, until a debt due from the natives to himself was satisfied. If there was any Court in that country to which he could have applied for justice he might have done so, but he had no right to take the law into his own hands.
Discussion. In this case the prospective advantage is protected against interference by means that are unlawful in themselves even though Plaintiff was never able to form a contract with the natives in the first place.