Ex-wife of Russian oligarch SETTLES her claim for Britain’s biggest divorce and accepts £150m

The ex-wife of a Russian oligarch who was awarded Britain’s biggest divorce payout of £453million has walked away with a settlement of just £150million, her husband has announced. 

Tatiana Akhmedova is said to have abandoned her fight to enforce the High Court judgement which awarded her the record matrimonial settlement. 

She has instead accepted a cash and art settlement worth around one-third of that sum.

Ms Akhmedova

The agreement was actually drawn up two days ago, sources close to the case told MailOnline, but has only just been announced. 

Ms Akhmedova will also have to pay £74.5million to her financial backers, Burford Capital. 

A spokesman for her ex-husband Farkhad Akhmedov said: ‘The intervention in a case over which the English Court should have had no jurisdiction and the involvement of Burford ultimately achieved nothing for Tatiana.

‘Burford and she spent years and millions of pounds on a costly global tour of various jurisdictions in their attempts to seize Luna. Every one of them failed and the yacht remains and will remain in the ownership of Farkhad and the family trusts.  

Akhmedov won't acknowledge the High Court ruling because they divorced in Russia some years before

Akhmedov won't acknowledge the High Court ruling because they divorced in Russia some years before

Tatiana is backed by Burford Capital, a litigation finance firm in her bid to secure the £453m payout

Tatiana is backed by Burford Capital, a litigation finance firm in her bid to secure the £453m payout

Akhmedov refused to accept the British divorce courts decision to pay his wife £453m claiming he and his wife were already divorced when they lived in Moscow

Central to the former couple's dispute was Akhmedov's £225million superyacht (pictured)

Central to the former couple's dispute was Akhmedov's £225million superyacht (pictured)

Central to the former couple’s dispute was Akhmedov’s £225million superyacht (pictured) 

‘Tatiana has ended up with not a penny more than she was offered by her ex-husband six years ago. Farkhad has provided no payment to Burford.

‘Those monies will have to be paid by Tatiana, thus reducing further to her the benefit of a settlement she could have had before the lawyers and financiers got involved.’ 

A spokesman for his ex wife confirmed the deal and said they would release a statement shortly.

From Russia but living in London, she was awarded a 41.5% share of ex-husband Farkhad Akhmedov’s £1 billion-plus fortune by Mr Justice Haddon-Cave in late 2016. 

The 115 metre-long ship (pictured) which Akhmedov bought from Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has been impounded in Dubai while the warring ex-couple fight over his assets

The 115 metre-long ship (pictured) which Akhmedov bought from Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has been impounded in Dubai while the warring ex-couple fight over his assets

The 115 metre-long ship (pictured) which Akhmedov bought from Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has been impounded in Dubai while the warring ex-couple fight over his assets   

Tatiana had applied to a court in the Marshall Islands, where it is registered, to take over ownership of the 115 metre Luna (above) as part of her £453million divorce settlement

Tatiana had applied to a court in the Marshall Islands, where it is registered, to take over ownership of the 115 metre Luna (above) as part of her £453million divorce settlement

Tatiana had applied to a court in the Marshall Islands, where it is registered, to take over ownership of the 115 metre Luna (above) as part of her £453million divorce settlement

Russian oil and gas tycoon Farkhad Akhmedov, 64, is fighting his ex-wife over their £453m divorce

Russian oil and gas tycoon Farkhad Akhmedov, 64, is fighting his ex-wife over their £453m divorce

Tatiana Akhmedova is trying to recover the cash from her ex-husband's assets after the High Court ruling

Tatiana Akhmedova is trying to recover the cash from her ex-husband's assets after the High Court ruling

Russian oil and gas tycoon Farkhad Akhmedov (left), 64, is fighting his ex-wife Tatiana Akhmedova (right), 48, over a £453million divorce settlement she was awarded in London

How did the battle over Britain’s biggest divorce settlement play out?

Farkhad Akhmedov and Tatiana Akhmedova were married for 20 years and enjoyed a lavish lifestyle. 

They had a £39million mansion in Surrey as their family home, as well as a £27.8million holiday home. 

In 2014, he bought a £225million 377ft super-yacht called Luna from Mr Abramovich. 

But the couple split and, at the end of 2016, a judge ordered Mr Akhmedov to hand over £453million to his former-wife.

A long, drawn-out legal battle began from there:

Late 2016 – Mr Akhmedov is ordered by a judge to pay £453million to his wife

January 2018 – Lawyers argued that the hearing was unfair, claiming that ‘the family court’s attitude was to espouse without restraint’ his ex wife’s case.

Ms Akhmedova, said that, despite the court’s order, she had to date received almost ‘nothing’ from her ex.

February 2018 – A source close to the businessman told MailOnline: ‘Mr Akhmedov has given his ex-wife a country home worth £20 million in Weybridge’. 

February 2018 – Three Court of Appeal judges ruled that the oligarch’s former solicitor had rightly been ordered to reveal the whereabouts of his art collection, worth more than £90 million.

March 2018 – Ms Akhmedova claims Mr Akhmedov is hiding assets to avoid paying her.

April 2018 – Mr Akhmedov is ordered to hand over his £183million superyacht to his former wife after a judge held he had tried to hide it from her in an ‘elaborate’ plan to ‘evade and frustrate’ his ex by moving the 377ft vessel between an array of offshore companies. 

March 2018 – Mr Akhmedov has £225m superyacht Luna seized by bailiffs – acting for the High Court – in Dubai. 

May 2018 – British web designer admits to having a long-term affair with Ms Akhmedov.

August 2018 – Judge Mr Justice Haddon-Cave said Ms Akhmedova is being ‘prejudiced’ by continued delay and said the gas and oil tycoon was in contempt.

August 2018 –  Dubai court refuses to return his superyacht. 

September 2018 – It is revealed that Mr Akhmedov offered his ex £4million-a-year for life plus an £80million lump sum when he dies – but she turned it down.

November 2018 –  Mr Akhmedov wins the right to keep his £225million superyacht and stop it being handed to his ex-wife.

December 2018 – Mr Akhmedov has his £5million helicopter seized and sold with the money going to his ex-wife.

Bailiffs acting for Ms Akhmedova took control of the Eurocopter when it landed in Turkey.

March 2019 – Mr Akhmedov wins battle to keep Luna out of the hands of his former wife.

An appeal court in the United Arab Emirates ruled an earlier decision by a lower court in Dubai impounding the luxury vessel had been wrong. 

Senior appeal judges ruled the divorce settlement awarded to Ms Akhmedova by a British court couldn’t be enforced in Dubai.

April 2019 – Mr Akhmedov announces he is personally suing his ex-wife Ms Akhmedova for £88 million for trying to seize control of the super yacht. 

January 2020 –  It is revealed that Ms Akhmedova will go head to head against her son Temur in the High Court.

May 2020 – Ms Akhmedova claims Temur played a ‘central role’ in placing the £450million she was owed by her ex-husband beyond her reach.

July 2020 – Judge makes an order freezing £94million of Temur’s assets. 

August 2020 – Mr Justice Haddon-Cave, who analysed the case at a trial in the Family Division of the High Court in London, said Ms Akhmedova should walk away with £453 million.

August 2020 – Judge in Dubai rules Mr Akhmedov is the rightful owner of the yacht. 

October 2020 – Ms Akhmedova has her son’s £30 million home in One Hyde Park searched for evidence that he helped his billionaire father hide his money from her. A judge Mr Akhmedov’s final appeal in his damages claim for the wrongful seizure of the Luna was declared ‘groundless’ by the Court of Cassation.

December 2020 – Temur claims Ms Akhmedova had two affairs with younger men while married to her Russian oligarch husband. Mr Akhmedov says he would rather ‘burn’ his money than pay his ex-wife’s divorce settlement. Temur says he ‘did not know’ whether he owned a £346,000 Rolls Royce. 

May 2021 – Both sides claim the Luna belongs to them, with a security team hired by the ex-wife to get it.

July 2021 – Mr Akhmedov says his wife has agreed to a settlement of £150million and the divorce battle is over. 

Advertisement

Mr Akhmedov did not pay and Ms Akhmedova took legal action in Britain and abroad in a bid to trace and seize his assets.

In preparation for the case, Ms Akhmedova said she had employed an asset recovery team, which includes former members of the Royal Navy’s Special Boat Service.

In May her spokesman revealed assets worth millions of pounds, including a helicopter and speedboat, had been recovered.

At the time, the spokesman said Ms Akhmedova also thought she was in a position to lay claim to superyacht, the Luna, which is worth more than £200 million and moored in Dubai.

He said a court ruling in the Marshall Islands, where the yacht is registered, had paved the way for the ownership to be transferred.

A spokesman for Mr Akhmedov disagreed.

He said a court ruling in Dubai prevented Ms Akhmedova seizing the yacht.

Mr Akhmedov says that, because he and his ex-wife are not British and were not married in Britain, a British judge should not have made a decision about money.

Earlier this year, another London High Court judge concluded that Ms Akhmedova had been a victim of a ‘series of schemes’ designed to put ‘every penny’ beyond her reach.

Mrs Justice Gwynneth Knowles, who has overseen recent litigation, concluded that her ex-husband and eldest son, Temur Akhmedov, had worked against her together.

She said Temur Akhmedov had been his father’s ‘lieutenant’.

The judge said very large sums had been transferred to Temur Akhmedov and ruled that he must pay his mother around £75 million.

The 115metre Luna had been the centrepiece of the £453million settlement, only a fraction of which has been received by ex wife Tatiana.

At one point she hired a team to try to secure the enormous boat from a Dubai dock, led by former members of the British Special Boat Service – the naval version of the SAS.

Assets separately seized had included the yacht’s private £5million Eurocopter and its £1.5million Torpedo speed boat, customised with a 1965 Ferrari GTO steering wheel.

A £40million global express jet had also been taken. 

The Luna was built for Roman Abramovich in 2010 before being sold to Farkhad in 2014 for £225million.

It has at nine decks, space for 52 crew, two helipads, a vast swimming pool and a mini submarine.

They are capable of acting as VIP transport and being lifeboats at the same time.  

Luna also has one of only two multipurpose custom made lifeboat-limousines in the world at a cost of over £2.8m each.

In May Ms Akhmedova’s representatives announced that a court in the Marshall Islands, which are in the central Pacific Ocean, had issued an order giving them the right to seize the super yacht from Mr Akhmedov.

But a week later in a dramatic turnaround, the same court ruled that it had no power to enforce the order because only a court in Dubai, where the Luna is currently docked, could enforce a change of ownership.

In a written ruling, the court stated: ‘The Republic of the Marshall Island Maritime Administrator will not comply with the Order….the Court cannot compel the Administrator to comply with the Court’s order to transfer title (of the Luna).’

At the time a spokesman for Mr Akhmedov said: ‘These judgements, although welcome, come as absolutely no surprise.

‘The judge’s admission that the Marshall Island Registrar cannot be compelled to transfer the ownership confirms what our lawyers have always argued: that the Luna falls totally under the jurisdiction of Dubai, not the home of its flag of convenience.

‘This is in keeping with the international principles of maritime law.’ 

Ms Akhmedova’s spokesman insisted that the decision on the Luna had merely been deferred by the Marshall Islands Court and that another hearing would take place next year.

He said: ‘This is a smokescreen, twisting the words of the High Court to give the appearance that Tatiana’s existing rights in the Luna have changed.

‘No honest person could deny that under the current state of affairs, the Luna is subject to an immediate transfer of title without further objection from Farkhad Akhmedov.

‘We will enact the turnover order at a time and place of our choosing and have complete confidence that the Maritime Administrator will comply when it is served with the turnover order.’

Ms Akhmedova’s financial backers Burford Capital is one of a number of litigation funding firms who have grown in recent years as class action lawsuits become more common in the UK.

Rival Therium Litigation Funding is currently backing a group of pension funds and asset managers who will find out this week if they can form a group to launch proceedings against several big banks for allegedly fixing foreign exchange rates.

Former Pensions Regulator Michael O’Higgins is leading the legal action, which could see a payout of £1 billion to customers who lost out.

link

(Visited 25 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply