Relations between Venezuela and the European Union have been tense since 2017 when Venezuela became the first Latin American country to receive sanctions from the European Union, including an arms embargo.
About 60 countries have since recognised Guaido as Venezuela's leader, including the United States, which has imposed sanctions on Maduro and his inner circle.
One of the officials sanctioned is the opposition legislator Luis Parra, who is contesting the leadership of the National Assembly controlled by the opposition and Maduro's main challenger Juan Guaido.
A BCV board appointed by the government of Nicolas Maduro wants the gold released while a rival ad hoc board appointed by Guaido asked for the release to be denied. Guaido proclaimed himself an interim president of Venezuela in January 2019 with the claim receiving broad support from the U.S. and other western countries, but failed to gain global recognition.
Justice Nigel Teare ruled on Thursday: "Her Majesty's Government does recognise Mr Guaido in the capacity of the constitutional interim president of Venezuela and, it must follow, does not recognise Mr Maduro as the constitutional interim president of Venezuela".
Maduro succeeded Hugo Chavez as president of Venezuela in 2013, going on to win a second term in 2018 amid claims of vote-rigging; the opposition boycotted the election. Guaido is the rightful congressional president following his election in January, not the court-approved Luis Parra, the European Union said.
The relationship between Caracas and Europe have long turned sour, as the block still sees Guaido as the head of the National Assembly despite him being ousted as result of the election in January, which the US-backed opposition leader denounced as a parliamentary 'coup.
'Whatever the basis for the recognition, Her Majesty's Government has unequivocally recognised Mr Guaido as president of Venezuela.