Yacht Central To UKs Largest Divorce Case Can Leave UAE

Story ByLee Bullen,Sub EditorJoseph Golder,AgencyCentral European News

A 345-million-GBP superyacht at the centre of Britain’s largest divorce case may finally be allowed to leave a Dubai port after two years.

The 115-metre MV Luna, which is worth 450 million USD (345 million GBP), has been held in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates as Russian oligarch Farkhad Akhmedov battles with a UK court that had ruled its transferral to his ex-wife, according to local media.

However, last week Dubai’s Court of Appeals dismissed Tatiana Akhmedova’s attempt to enforce the UK ruling, claiming it contradicted Sharia law.


The decision was a blow to litigation funder Burford Capital who reportedly gave Tatiana funding in exchange for 30 percent of any assets she recovers from the divorce case, according to reports.

Local media said the UK ruling remains in effect along with an injunction from the Marshall Islands, the yacht’s flag state.

A spokesperson for Tatiana said that Dubai’s highest court can still review the decision, adding that she “remains confident in the merits of her case and that the Dubai courts will support common standards of international co-operation by recognising and enforcing overseas judgments”.


Meanwhile, Burford also said that it would continue to pursue the case.

A company spokesperson said: “Farkhad Akhmedov is a judgment debtor evading an English Court order.

“As he will discover, nobody is above the law.”

Reports said that Burford has given Tatiana 18 million GBP to fund the litigation.

The superyacht, which has been a focus of litigation for almost two years, was impounded in Dubai in a decision that was viewed as an initial victory for Burford and Tatiana, according to local media.

However, the Russian oligarch’s team has reportedly managed to persuade the local courts to release the vessel.

Reports said that the marriage ended in 2014 and the UK ruling was made after a judge said in December 2016 that the oligarch must pay 41 percent of his assets to his former partner.

However, the businessman refused to take part in the British case and moved back to Russia, according to local media.

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