Business Irish

Thursday 18 October 2018

Receiver is appointed over Irish shares linked to Russian fugitive

Stock photo
Stock photo

Tim Healy

The High Court has appointed a receiver over shares in three Irish-registered aviation firms linked to a fugitive Russian businessman.

The orders were made over shares which are held in trust for the benefit of Rashid M Mursekayev, who has extensive interests in the aviation industry and is the subject of a criminal investigation for alleged fraud arising out of financial difficulties of Vim Avia Airlines, which he co-owns.

The situation concerning Vim Airlines has drawn the ire of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who publicly criticised his own government's transport minister and deputy prime minister over their handling of the matter.

Mr Mursekayev, the court heard, has fled Russian and his current whereabouts are unknown.

Yesterday, lawyers representing US-registered firm Volgadnepr-Unique Air Cargo Inc obtained temporary High Court orders against Mr Mursekayev, aka Mursekaev, and the firms Fastway Leasing DAC, Avion Leasing Ltd DAC and City Leasing DAC.

The orders also apply to Orpheus Shareholder Ltd which is the legal owner of the shares in Fastway and City.

The interim orders are that Jim Luby, of McStay Luby, act as receiver over all the shares in Fastway, Avion, and City Leasing. The order also prohibits the shares being transferred or deposed in any way pending further order of the court.

Andrew Fitzpatrick SC, instructed by Whitney Moore, solicitors for Volgadnepr, said his client obtained a €4m judgment in the German courts against a German-registered firm called ACG Air Cargo which became insolvent in 2013.

The loan, which was not repaid, was guaranteed by Mr Mursekayev, counsel said.

The judgment was granted in 2016, but since then his client had been unable to serve Mr Mursekayev at his Moscow home.

The orders were being sought in the Irish courts against the three companies in order to enforce the judgment obtained in Germany.

The three companies have registered addresses in Dublin and Limerick, and the matter was urgent as the plaintiff fears that there is a danger that any assets could be moved outside of the jurisdiction by Mr Mursekayev.

Counsel said that Mr Mursekayev is under investigation by the Russian authorities for alleged fraud.

The orders were granted, on an ex-parte (one side only represented) basis, by Mr Justice Paul Gilligan. He adjourned the case to next week.

Irish Independent

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