A UK Court in London, the Central Criminal Court, has discharged a freezing order against assets beneficially owned by Nikolay Zlochevskyi. The court considered evidence filed in respect of the activities of Mr Zlochevskyi from 2002 to 2014. In essence, the court held that the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO)’s evidence showed no reasonable cause to believe that Mr Zlochevskyi had benefited from criminal conduct.
The court ordered that funds, in the amount of USD 23 million, in the UK accounts of two companies be released, on the grounds that the freezing order should be discharged. The SFO had applied for these accounts to be frozen in April 2014. The accounts remained frozen for nine months. Following a hearing in early December 2014, the court agreed that notwithstanding ample opportunity to do so, the SFO had been unable to undermine the reliability of the evidence put forward on behalf of Mr Zlochevskyi. In conclusion, the court held that the SFO’s evidence did not establish reasonable grounds for a belief that Mr Zlochevskyi’s assets were unlawfully acquired.
“The British judicial system never caused us doubt on the subject of objectivity of judgments, and we expect Ukraine to observe the same standards of due process of law and acceptance of European norms consistent with its aspiration to eventually join the European Union”, said Non- Executive Chairman of the Board of Burisma Holdings, Alan Apter.
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