By Robert A. Emmanuel
Antigua and Barbuda (Antigua Observer) – The first hearing in the legal matter involving Yulia Guryeva-Motlokhov, the daughter of sanctioned Russian fertiliser tycoon Andrey Guryev, was held yesterday as the government continues to face legal challenges on all sides over the now-infamous Alfa Nero superyacht.
The government has been seeking to sell the vessel since June and despite having two bidders over the stated minimum threshold of a forced sale (US$60 million) the boat remains in the government’s hands.
Guryeva-Motlokhov claims to be the sole beneficiary of a Guernsey-based trust that is the sole shareholder of BVI-based firm, Flying Dutchman Limited, which is said to own the Alfa Nero.
Attorney for Guryeva-Motlokhov, Dr David Dorsett, pledged that the litigation to prevent the government from selling the vessel will continue until the government returns the vessel to its rightful owner.
“Until the government caves in and talks to us, so that the boat can get back into its rightful hands; it really doesn’t belong to the government as the government has no right to seize the boat,” he said.
The government has been incurring debts of over US$100,000 a month since it seized full control of the vessel in April, and has said that its sale would cover all of the boat’s debts, both inside and outside the country’s shores.