Court To Deliver Ruling Next Month On Amadea Case

The DPP, Christopher Pryde, filed an ex parte originating summons under the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act in the High Court.
26 Apr 2022 11:52
Court To Deliver Ruling Next Month On Amadea Case
Russian superyacht, Amadea at the Port of Lautoka on April 15, 2022. Photo: Leon Lord

The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) had filed an application to register a warrant from the United States to seize the $700 million superyacht Amadea next month.

The matter was called before High Court Judge Justice Deepthi Amaratunga yesterday for a hearing on the application.

The Civil High Court will deliver its ruling  next month.

The DPP, Christopher Pryde, filed an ex parte originating summons under the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act in the High Court.

Meanwhile, Millemarin Investment Limited is registered owner of the superyacht.

The company was represented by Counsel Feizal Haniff while the State was represented by DPP lawyer Jayneeta Prasad.


Ms Prasad submitted:

  • State made the application for registration of the US warrant to seize the superyacht, Amadea.
  • Application was made by the US authorities to the Attorney-General’s office who then authorised the DPP’s office to bring the application matter to the court.
  • The court needed to be satisfied with three things: foreign restraining order, warrant of a serious offence, and property to be located in Fiji.
  • Warrant to seize the property subject to forfeiture.
  • It restrained with dealing with a property for sanction violation by the yacht to commit and for the property involving money laundering.
  • Money laundering was considered a serious offence in Fiji and because of it, it attracted a 20-year prison term.
  • DPP believed it had proven that its case had proven the three things the court needed to be satisfied with to grant the order of registration of the US warrant.
  • The ownership of the superyacht Amadea was not an issue.
  • The yacht was subjected to a warrant by the US and the ownership issue could be dealt with by their jurisdiction.


Mr Haniff submitted:

  • The court had established there were Civil Forfeiture Act by the US Authority and under the Proceeds of Crime Act, there were certain Acts that dealt with the restraining order.
  • In order for the court to grant the restraining order for superyacht Amadea, the court must be satisfied that the yacht was tainted property.
  • The court needed to be satisfied on the grounds that the property was tainted property and not simply because the US Court was saying it but because this Court had to be satisfied that Amadea was tainted property.
  • There was no evidence before the court that Amadea was a result of proceeds of crime.
  • The DPP requested to get an order for the US which contained the warrant to seize property subject to forfeiture.
  • The warrant stated that the purpose of the request was to restrain the Amadea which was believed to be beneficially owned by Russian oligarch Suleiman Kerimov, who was subjected to US sanctions.
  • There was no evidence offered that Amadea’s beneficial owner was Suleiman Kerimov.
  • The second respondent in the case, Millemarin Investment Limited was the registered owners.
  • The beneficial owner of the yacht Amadea was Eduard Khudaynatov.
  • The superyacht Amadea was purchased by Millemarin Investments Limited on July 20, 2021, by way of the sales purchase agreement.

If the court made an order to register the foreign order, then it must order that Amadea remained in Fiji.

Justice Amaratunga will deliver his judgment on the case on May 3.




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