The trustees for the creditors of David Sibbald held an auction to sell a portion of Sibbald’s effects. At the auction, John Carnegie purchased a stack of wheat and transferred it to the petitioner, Thomas Robertson. Carnegie and Robertson did not grant a bill to the trustees for the price of the wheat, and the trustees eventually raised an action before the sheriff for payment, damages, and expenses. Robertson raised a counter-proceeding, alleging that the trustees owed him payment for certain business matters. The parties engaged in extensive litigation, leading to an order by the Lord Ordinary stating that Robertson had engaged in “manifestly improper conduct” and finding him liable for expenses. Robertson challenged this order on two grounds. First, he argued that his legal actions were justified. Second, he argued that the trustees were not competent to pursue the action because they had already been denuded of their trust. The trustees disputed these claims.