Enyo Law client, Gennadiy Bogolyubov, successfully defends US$300m fraud claim by Russian oil company

Published: 24/2/2021

Enyo Law represented high profile Ukrainian businessman, Gennadiy Bogolyubov, in his successful defence of proceedings brought against him by the Russian state-owned oil company, PJSC Tatneft.

Tatneft claimed some US$300m in respect of oil payments, and which it alleged that the Defendants had caused not to be paid. Mr Bogolyubov denied the factual allegations made against him, whilst also advancing a defence that the claim was in event time barred under Russian law and otherwise defective, as no harm had been demonstrated by the Claimant. Following a 12 week trial, a judgment was handed down on 24 February 2021. In the judgment, Mrs Justice Moulder held that Tatneft’s claim was time barred under Russian law. The Judge stated that she was clear on the evidence and that limitation was a complete defence to the claims made. In her factual findings Mrs Justice Moulder discounted the evidence of all of Tatneft’s witnesses who gave evidence; noted the collective absence of key Tatneft witnesses; and further noted the extensive absence of key documentation from Tatneft’s disclosure.

The 12 week trial was conducted entirely remotely with factual and expert evidence being given from multiple locations around the world, and with the use of simultaneous interpretation. It is the longest ever Commercial Court trial conducted remotely and demonstrated that, with careful preparation, significant trials, including those involving alleged fraud and where the veracity of witness evidence is critical, can be effectively conducted remotely – Mrs Justice Moulder holding in her judgment that Tatneft’s witnesses at trial had been: “evasive, unreliable and in some instances likely to be not telling the truth”.

Read the full judgment.

The Enyo team comprised of George Maling, Steven McDonald, Lucinda Orr, Konrad Rogers, Jennah Akehurst, Matthew Marshall, Bruno Bainsfair, Emily Scale, Artur Harabet and Oleksiy Shkurka.

Enyo Law LLP instructed Ewan McQuater QC, Matthew Parker and Nathaniel Bird of 3VB

Fieldfisher LLP acted for the Second Defendant, Mr Igor Kolomoisky; Mishcon de Reya LLP acted for the Third Defendant, Mr Alexander Yaroslavsky; and Sherrards Solicitors LLP acted for the Fourth Defendant, Mr Pavel Ovcharneko. Debevoise & Plimpton LLP acted for the Claimant.

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