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Senior Counsel Anthony Astaphan, one of the attorneys representing the government in the Alfa Nero legal battle says his team is pleased with the latest judgment.
On Wednesday, the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal dismissed another appeal, this time from Yulia Gurieva-Motlokhov in her constitutional motion, seeking to set aside the high court’s judgment, which refused to grant them an injunction pending the trial of the matter.
This is not the first time that the court ruled in favour of the government
“We are happy with the result. It is a consistent result…While we have two sets of proceedings, one on behalf of the daughter and the other on behalf of the company, in both of these situations, the court has agreed with us that there ought not to be any injunction granted, pending the trial of the matter,” he said
Astaphan, legal counsel for the Antigua and Barbuda government, has stated that their current obligation is to study a recent judgment and provide guidance to Attorney General Steadroy Benjamin and Prime Minister Gaston Browne regarding the next steps
The government acquired the vessel on April 11, 2023, after it was abandoned in the country’s waters for over a year.
Since then, the government has been paying $28,000 per week to cover expenses related to the vessel, including fuel and crew salaries.
However, multiple legal challenges have been filed against the sale of the Alfa Nero superyacht, with Yulia Guryeva-Motlokhov claiming to be the rightful owner of the vessel.
Guryeva-Motlokhov is the daughter of the Russian oligarch Andrey Guryev and the sole beneficiary of a trust that owns the vessel via a 100 percent shareholding in the BVI-based firm, Flying Dutchman Limited.
Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google, had agreed to purchase the Alfa Nero for $67.6 million, but eventually withdrew from the deal due to ongoing court proceedings regarding the original ownership of the vessel.