Russian Abramovich did not buy Chelsea for Putin, court hears


London — Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich did not buy Chelsea FC as a means of corrupting the West, not President Vladimir Putin’s “casher,” his lawyer defamed Putin’s book on Russia. He told the English High Court at the hearing.

In the 2020 book, British journalist Catherine Belton found that after Putin’s rise in power and the Kremlin’s top position in 1999, some of his former Soviet espionage service associates were wealthy and influential. It records whether you have been promoted to a position.

Abramovich’s lawyer told the court that the text of the book “Putin’s People: The KGB Regained Russia and Then the West” published by HarperCollins was clearly defamatory. Abramovich is suing both HarperCollins and Berton.

“The plaintiff is described in the book as Putin’s cashier and keeper of Kremlin’s slush fund,” Hugh Tomlinson, a lawyer for Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich, told the High Court. Talked about the book.

“What is said to be happening is that Mr Abramovich is making his wealth available to Putin … secretly to Putin and his associates-that’s a rational and ordinary reader’s view. “Tomlinson said of Putin’s book.

“We firmly defend this highly regarded and groundbreaking book and the right to report on significant public interest issues,” said HarperCollins.

Belton was a former Financial Times Moscow correspondent and is now a Reuters correspondent. Mr. Berton, who attended the hearing, declined to comment. Law firm Wiggin represents HarperCollins.

Tomlinson said Berton’s book relied on what he cast as an “unreliable” source, such as Russian businessman Sergei Pugachyov, who later fouled Kremlin.

He claimed that Putin had ordered Abramovich to buy the Chelsea football club “as part of a plan to corrupt the West” and “build a barrier to Russia’s influence.”

“Ordinary rational readers will inevitably come up with the view that Roman Abramovich was instructed to buy Chelsea … so he used it as an acceptable face of a corrupt and dangerous regime. It was broken, “said Tom Linson.

Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with representative of Keren Hysod in Moscow
Russian businessman and co-founder of Alfa Group Mikhail Fridman will attend a meeting of the Keren Hysod Foundation in Israel on September 17, 2019 in Moscow, Russia. (PavelGolovkin / Pool via Reuters)

A lawyer in Russia’s largest oil company, Rosneft, said in a document filed in court that there was a problem with the text of the book stating that the company had confiscated the Yukos oil company and bought assets in a fraudulent auction. Stated.

Rosneft lawyers claimed that Rosneft claimed to have used Russia to participate in Yukos’ “organized theft.”

Russia “illegally expropriated assets previously owned by the OAO Yukos Oil Company (” Yukos “) and its final owners, due to the acquiescence of several judges under improper pressure.” Rosneft made one of the claims of the book.

“And in combination with Rosneft, we have made it possible for Rosneft to buy Yukos assets at unreasonable prices in very fraudulent auctions,” Rosneft’s lawyer said in a statement to the book.

Rosneft and CEO Igor Sechin did not respond to a written request for comment on the case when contacted by Reuters.

Rosneft’s lawyer had problems with the text of the book claiming that Sechin was behind the attack on Yukos.

Guy Fallconbridge, Vladimir Soldatkin, Tatiana Ustinova