Settlement reached in case arising from Abramovich, Berezovsky dispute
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MOSCOW, March 14 (RAPSI) – A case that arose from the dispute between Russian businessmen Roman Abramovich and Boris Berezovsky was settled Friday in the London High Court, according to a statement released by Signature Litigation, which was representing the claimants.
Inna Gudavadze and her family had launched the claim against Vasily Anisimov over a stake in Russian Metalloinvest company. Hearings were set to commence on Monday.
In August 2012, Berezovsky famously lost to Abramovich in a case centering on a series of decade-old business deals. Berezovsky had claimed approximately $5.5 billion in damages, but was left with nothing but the obligation to pay Abramovich’s legal costs, amounting to approximately £35 million. Berezovsky had claimed to have held stakes in various Russian companies, and had sustained losses when business relations between businessmen soured.
In ruling on the matter, presiding Judge Gloster made clear the fact that she was not thoroughly impressed by Berezovsky’s case, stating, “On my analysis of the entirety of the evidence, I found Mr. Berezovsky an unimpressive, and inherently unreliable, witness, who regarded truth as a transitory, flexible concept, which could be moulded to suit his current purposes.” She later added, “I regret to say the bottom line of my analysis of Mr. Berezovsky’s credibility is that he would have said almost anything to support his case.”
Shortly thereafter, Berezovsky settled a $3 million dispute with the beneficiaries of his former business partner Badri Patarkatsishvili over allegations that he had transferred assets to his partner for fear that he would be unable to personally secure them.
Around the same time, Berezvosky withdrew a claim he had filed in the High Court against Metalloinvest co-owner Anisimov, whom he had sued following Patarkatsishvili’s death. Berezovsky had initially claimed that he was entitled to part of Anisimov’s share of Metalloinvest, alleging that it was purchased using the proceeds from the sale of the 25% stake in RusAl he had claimed to have co-owned with Patarkatsishvili in the Abramovich suit.
According to The Lawyer, the $1.5 billion claim was filed against Anisimov by Patarkatsishvili’s family and estate, which claimed partial entitlement to Anisimov’s former share in Metalloinvest. The family reportedly alleged that Anisimov had agreed to invest a portion of the proceeds into Metalloinvest’s forerunner Mikhailovsky. Anisamov countered that Patarkatsishvili agreed orally to split the proceeds, and that he purchased in own stake in Mikhailovsky with his share of the earnings.
“I am very pleased to confirm that a settlement has been reached between my clients and Mr Anisimov which conclusively brings to an end the long-running dispute due to commence next Monday. My clients are now looking forward to focusing on their business interests and charitable projects,” Gudavadze’s General Counsel Ben Marson said, as quoted in the statement.
Signature Litigation’s Graham Huntley, who had been acting for Gudavadze’s family, noted the family’s pleasure at being able to put the issue behind them, but reiterated that the settlement is subject to confidentiality.