British court dismisses former BTA Bank head's appeal against arrest
ALMA-ATA, November 6 – RAPSI. The London Court of Appeals has upheld the ruling to keep former BTA Bank head Mukhtar Ablyazov under arrest and to place him in jail, the bank’s press service has reported on Tuesday.
According to the press service, Ablyazov lost the appeal under two main rulings of the High Court of Justice in London. Pursuant to its first ruling, Ablyazov has been sentenced to 22 months in prison for contempt of court. Pursuant to the second ruling, Ablyazov must surrender to the corresponding authorities and fully disclose information on his assets. Otherwise, he will be deprived of the right to a defense in the bank's eight lawsuits worth over $6 billion against him.
In 2009, the bank filed the lawsuits against Ablyazov to return assets worth billions of dollars, which it believes were stolen by Ablyazov when he chaired the bank's board of directors.
“The bank hopes that the success in the proceedings will help to hasten the resolution of the issue to return the assets illegally withdrawn from the bank,” according to the press service.
The case against Ablyazov was opened in early 2009 after the Kazakh government acquired a stake in BTA and the bank came under the control of its Samruk-Kazyna sovereign fund. Ablyazov fled the country and settled in the UK. He believes the charges against him are politically motivated. Kazakhstan seeks his extradition for large-scale fraud, draining the bank's funds using dummy companies.
Russia has also launched criminal proceedings against Ablyazov. In October 2010, a Moscow district court issued an arrest warrant for Ablyazov in absentia on charges of large-scale fraud.