Gaydmak vs Leviev (Levaev) dispute in UK over diamonds business in Africa

gaydamak vs leviev UK

The case, brought by Arkady Gaydamak against Lev Leviev (Levaev) in London in 2012, over disputed unpaid commissions and dividends from diamonds business in Angola. Involves testimony on the roles of the US-Russian rabbi Berl Lazar and an Angolan general. Gaydamak lost the suite.

Gaydamak is convicted in the so called French “Angolagate affair” of arms  sales and money laundering between France and Angola during the civil war in Angola (1975-2002).  The amount of these sales is estimated at some $ 790 million.

The first instance sentence for the “Angolagate affair” was handed down on October 27, 2009 in Paris.  Gaydamak, alias Bar Lev ARYE (his Israeli ID) and Falcone were found guilty of illegal arms deals, tax fraud, money laundering, embezzlement and others, sentenced to six years in prison and fines. Gaydamak was sentenced in absentia.

The Paris Court of Appeal’s decision was given on April 29, 2011. Gaydamak’s sentence was reduced to three years of prison and €375,000 fine for tax evasion and  laundering of money of “serious criminal origin” (p.73 of the document). The appeal decision confirmed the international arrest warrant for Gaydamak (ibid). The appeal court cleared the majority of defendants, including Gaydamak, for proper arms trafficking, accepting their claims that they acted on behalf of Angola’s government.

In 2013 a group of Angolan citizens submitted a complaint to Swiss prosecutors against Gaydamak, his partner Russian senator Vitaly Malkin and others, pretending they helped to embezzle Angolan State debt to Russia to Swiss accounts.

In 2018 brother and son of Leviev were reportedly arrested in Israel in the case of diamonds smuggling.  (See also mentions of Levaev in a Gennady Petrov’s conversation from Tambovskaya gang case and an Austrian Prosecution’s document on Leviev’s link to Mikhail Chernoy from Izmaylovskaya gang).

Taiwanchik (Alimzhan Toktakhunov) claimed in an interview that Gaydamak was his friend. Gaydamak resides in Moscow.

In 1972, Gaydamak emigrated to Israel and than to France from USSR on the so-called Jewish exit visa. See more on this type of emigration and suspicion of cooperation with KGB of the new immigrants also involved in organized crime, raised by Swiss Intelligence (2007) and an FBI report (90ths).

Angolagate’s 2009 sentence, France

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The Angolagate is the name given to a vast affair of arms and war material sales between France and Angola by President Dos Santos in the years 1993-1998, during the civil war in Angola (1975-2002) and linked to that money laundering from arms trafficking.  The amount of these sales is estimated at some $ 790 million.

The sentence for the “Angolagate affair” was handed down on October 27, 2009. Charles Pasqua and Jean-Charles Marchiani were found guilty of taking money from Arkady Gaydamak and Falcone while knowing it was proceeds of crime, from the Slovak company ZTS Osos, having acounts at the Russian Bank Rossiyski Credit and COMMERCIAL BANK MOSKVA. Gaydamak claimed that the main shareholder of the Slovak company ZTS Osos, which he headed, was Russian arms exporter Spetsvneshtekhnika.

“According to Mr. CURIAL, Mr. FALCONE had explained that it was a Slovak company linked to the KGB, a service to which Mr. GAYDAMAK had been a member (page 178 of the sentence).”

Gaydamak, alias Bar Lev ARYE (his Israeli ID) and Falcone were found guilty of illegal arms deals, tax fraud, money laundering, embezzlement and others, sentenced to six years in prison and multi-million-euro fines each. Gaydamak was sentenced in absentia. Falcone, who tried and failed to claim diplomatic immunity in the case, was taken into custody by police. Jean-Christophe Mitterrand was found guilty of receiving $2 million from Falcone and Gaydamak to promote their interests, and sentenced to a two-year suspended sentence and a €375,000 fine. In total, thirty six individuals were convicted of various levels of involvement in the scandal,21 of them appealed the decision.

Gaydamak also claimed that he had a diplomatic immunity as an Ambassador of Angola to UNESCO  (the court refused to consider a Gaydamak’s diplomatic immunity in France).

The Paris Court of Appeal’s decision was given on April 29, 2011. Gaydamak’s sentence was reduced to three years of prison and €375,000 fine for tax evasion and  laundering of money of “serious criminal origin” (p.73 of the appeal decision). The appeal decision confirmed the international arrest warrant for Gaydamak (ibid). The appeal court cleared the majority of defendants, including Gaydamak, for proper arms trafficking, accepting their claims that they acted on behalf of Angola’s government.

See more about the appeal decision (in French) and its criticism: the appeal trial was preceded by a singular episode. Five weeks before the opening of the hearing on this diplomatically and economically sensitive subject – Angola is one of the largest oil producers in Africa – President Christian Pers was surprised to learn of his sudden promotion to the Court of Cassation and its immediate replacement. Before that, Mr. Pers had made two unwelcome decisions by refusing to grant the defendant, partner of Gaydamak Pierre Falcone’s requests for release.

During the trial was said that to be involved in legal oil businesses in Angola via Glencore. (See also, Glencore’s involvement in Nordex with Grigory Luchanski, p.92).

Gaydamak said to Russian press that the case is of ” pure politics”. In the same interview, Gaydamak said he helped Lev Leviev alias Levaev to set up diamonds trading with Angola, having a company Africa Israel together with Levaev. In 2012, Gaydamak sued Leviev in London over unpaid commission for diamond businesses and lost the suite.

In 2018 brother and son of Levaev were reportedly arrested in Israel in the case of diamonds smuggling.  (See also mentions of Levaev in a Gennady Petrov’s conversation from Tambovskaya gang case and an Austrian Prosecution’s document on Leviev’s link to Mikhail Chernoy from Izmaylovskaya gang).

Taiwanchik (Alimzhan Toktakhunov) claimed in an interview that Gaydamak was his friend. Gaydamak resides in Moscow.

In 1972, Gaydamak emigrated to Israel and than to France from USSR on the so-called Jewish exit visa. See more on this type of emigration and suspicion of cooperation with KGB of the new immigrants also involved in organized crime, raised by Swiss Intelligence (2007) and an FBI report (90ths).

Hermitage Capital’s investigation into possible corruption at Gazrom, Eural Trans Gas and Rosukrenergo, 2005

Hermitage Capital investigation into corruption in Gazrom, EuralTransGaz and Rosukrenergo, 2005

Hermitage Capital Management told “The Moscow Times” on 16 June 2005 (as recalled here by Radio Free Europe) that Gazprom is losing out on $478 million in annual revenues from the RosUkrEnergo deal and that this money is going to unknown beneficiaries participating in RosUkrEnergo via Raiffeisen Investment.  At that time Hermitage Capital was minory shareholder of Gazprom.

As this Hermitage’s presentation shows, the figure comes from the official accounting of Gazprom itself, comparing what Gazprom could have had earned without giving monopoly of export to Ukraine to Eural Trans Gas and Rosukrenergo.

See also: official owners of RosUkrEnegro from Swiss business registry.

Austrian Parliamentary inquiry into Russian organized crime and Rosukrenegro, open part, sealed part (in German), 2007.

Austrian police’s report on Semyon Mogilevich mentioning his ties to Eural Trans Gas, Rosukrenergo and Dmitry Firtash (in German), 2005.

 

Rosukrenergo, Firtash, Chernoy, Bawag – parliamentary inquiry in Austria, 2007 (sealed part)

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Transcript of the sealed part of the parliamentary inquiry in Austria, from July 4, 2007, dedicated to Russia mafia and money laundering in the country and possible involvement of Austrian financial institutions.

Continuation of the Rosukrenergo, Firtash, Chernoy, Bawag – parliamentary inquiry in Austria, 2007 (open part). German language.

Of interest:

English translation:

Page 56:

Deputy Werner Kogler (Greens): But something different has come. There are the representatives of Raiffeisen Investment together with legal representatives and representatives of the settler there: then, as we all knew later, it is about Firtash and Fursin. For their part, they flew to the US, to Washington, in February and so called reported there. That’s also very strange, as we can imagine here. – Do you have a perception that Raiffeisen Investment AG and the management have decided to fly to the US and report there to representatives of FBI, CIA? What do you know about it ?

Dr. Erich Zwettler: The only perception I have is that the representative of the FBI came to Vienna at some point and said that the whole story was finished because the Raiffeisen board of directors somehow met up with the people of Stuart Levey [US’ first Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence within the United States Department of the Treasury] and there is no more ground to any …

Original transcript:

Seite 56:

Abgeordneter Werner Kogler (Grüne) : Aber gekommen ist etwas anderes. Es sind nämlich die Vertreter von Raiffeisen Investment samt Rechtsvertreter und Vertreter des Treugebers dort : da geht es dann, wie wir später alle gewusst haben, um Firtash und Fursin. Die sind ihrerseits in die USA geflogen, nach Washington, im Februar und haben dort sozusagen berichtet. Das hat sich auch sehr seltsam zugefragen, wie wir uns hier jedoch vorstellen können. – Haben sie dazu eine Wahrnehmung, dass die Raiffeisen Investment AG und das Management sich entschlossen haben, in die USA zu fliegen und dort vor Vertretern FBI, CIA Bericht abzulegen ? Was wissen Sie darüber ?

Mag. Erich Zwettler : Die einzige Wahrnehmung die ich dazu habe ist, dass der Vertreter des FBI in Wien irgendwann einmal gekommen ist und gesagt hat, die ganze Geschichte hat sich erledigt, weil der Vorstand von Raiffeisen sich irgendwie mit den Leuten des Stuart Levey getroffen hat, und es gibt keinen weiteren Grund mehr zu irgendwie…

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Lukoil’s link to mobster Zakhari Kalashov (Shakro)

Switzerland’s Prosecutor’s office rogatory letter to Spanish judge Fernando Andreu, 2005. Zakar Kalashov (nickname Shakro), linked to Solntsevskaya and Izmaylovskaya gangs, is said to be shareholder of a considerable part of Lukoil oil company.  Shakro was detained in Spain and later in Moscow whre his ties to high rank law enforcers were discovered.

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