STATI PARTIES REQUEST INFORMATION FROM THE CLEARING HOUSE PAYMENTS COMPANY ABOUT MARAT BEKETAYEV AND KARIM MASSIMOV
The Stati Parties have filed an application in New York to seek discovery from US-based payments infrastructure company The Clearing House Payments Company LLC.
The application seeks information on Karim Massimov, Kazakhstan’s Prime Minister at the time of the expropriation of the assets belonging to the owners of Tristan Oil, and on Marat Beketayev, Kazakhstan’s former Minister of Justice.
Information has also been requested about Bolashak Consulting Group. According to the application, “Beketayev used his position as Minister of Justice of Kazakhstan to engage in a series of coordinated harassment measures implemented through [Bolashak Consulting Group]”.
The application filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York seeks evidence in support of the Stati Parties’ $6.84bn civil claim initiated in Moldova in September 2021, alleging that the illegal expropriation of Tristan Oil assets by Kazakhstan was the result of blackmail, attempted blackmail, and abuse of official authority by more than a dozen individuals, including Massimov. The Moldovan claim itself also alleges that Beketayev played a key role in the subsequent campaign to prevent settlement of the award.
In July 2010, Tristan Oil owners’ assets were forcibly and illegally nationalized by the Kazakh authorities following a coordinated harassment campaign which began in October 2008. In December 2013, an international arbitration tribunal in Sweden awarded approximately $500m to the owners of Tristan Oil.
Kazakhstan has refused to pay the final, binding and non-appealable award and instead adopted a multijurisdictional legal strategy designed to frustrate the award and avoid compliance with its binding international treaty obligations.