JSC BTA Bank v Ablyazov (surrender order)


29th February 2012

High Court


This is the judgment of Teare J on the application of JSC BTA Bank for further relief flowing from the Court’s findings that Mr Ablayzov had acted in contempt of court, handed down on 16 February 2012. Pursuant to those findings, Mr Ablyazov was sentenced to three terms of 22 months’ imprisonment, such periods to run concurrently. The instant application was issued after Mr Ablyazov went “into hiding” having failed, contrary to a “clear and unequivocal confirmation … that he would attend the judgment”, to attend court on 16 February. The Bank therefore sought orders that Mr Ablyazov’s defences to its eight Commercial Court claims be struck out unless (a) Mr Ablyazov surrendered himself to the Tipstaff, and (b) Mr Ablyazov gave full and proper disclosure of his assets. The first aspect of the Bank’s application was described by Mr Ablyazov’s Counsel as “unprecedented”. The Court acceded to the Bank’s applications, though its orders will not come into effect pending any appeal made against its committal order. As with many aspects of the BTA litigation, the judgment has been highly publicised. The Financial Times, for instance, reported the decision under the heading “Judge ramps up pressure on Kazakh mogul”.

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