Traces of a businessman led to Liechtenstein

The principality initiated an investigation against the founder of SAHO Group.
As the "Kommersant", Liechtenstein prosecutors opened a criminal case on four articles of the Criminal Code in respect of a local founder and beneficiary groups SAHO Pavel Skurikhina companies. The occasion was an appeal of VTB Bank, which the businessman owed about 1.5 billion rubles. Blaming businessman linked to the fraud on the conclusion of assets under its control structures registered in the principality Berenger Foundation Fund. Earlier, the High Court in London has sentenced in absentia Mr. Skurikhina to 16 months in prison for failure to fulfill the requirement to disclose their assets.

According to "Kommersant", a statement to law enforcement authorities of Liechtenstein have addressed the representatives of VTB in February. They were asked to bring Paul Skurikhina accountable for falsification of evidence, misconduct in bankruptcy, fraud of creditors and concealment of property (Art. 147, 153, 156 and 162 of the Criminal Code of the Principality). According to representatives of VTB, the essence of the crimes was the withdrawal of assets controlled by businessman structures registered in the principality Berenger Foundation Trust Fund and Eastbridge Settlement with the island states of the CaribbeanSt Keith and Nevis. Immediately after receipt of the application Duchy prosecutor Andreas Houts filed criminal charges with the task of investigating prosecutor Gregor Girne. A month ago, the judge Monika Büchel of Liechtenstein issued at the request of the Prosecutor's Office warrant to search the offices Berenger Foundation. Police held the event and sends the results to the court. However, a search permit was challenged by representatives of the Fund in the higher courts. Consideration of the complaint may take about four months, and if the appeal is accepted for review by the Constitutional Court of the principality, even up to a year. If searches are recognized as legitimate, the lawyers VTB will receive the right to get acquainted with the documents found in Liechtenstein.

Berenger Foundation The Foundation was founded in 2005, two citizens of Liechtenstein and Switzerland Beat Lerch and Zeno Meier. Recently also, according to some data, perform various functions in the trust Eastbridge Settlement. Later, the two companies have entered into a single structure, to which joined a group SAHO. This supposedly Swiss citizens were dummies of the Russian businessman.

Meanwhile, at this time intacta number of companies belonging to SAHO group received about 40 loans in various banks. In total, in 2007-2009 it was issued about $ 500 million, which were to go to the development of one of the largest agricultural holdings, but in July 2010 the company ceased to service the debt. The debt to VTB only amounted to about 1.5 billion rubles. Loans were provided including collateral in the form of land and personal guarantees of SAHO Pavel Skurikhina.

According to some reports, SAHO group leadership to withdraw their assets, using a number of companies, including English. The owner of some of them was listed as the same Berenger Foundation Fund and gentlemen Lerch and Meyer. As I told "Kommersant", the suit of VTB High Court in London in June last year issued an order forbidding the debtor any operations around the world (with the exception of Russia, Belarus, China and Cuba) with its assets worth up to £ 25 million. Overseas made the list real estate businessman, its shares and loans in British and Swiss firms, trusts in Liechtenstein and Nevis and assets in a number of Italian companies, including belonging to his wife Polis salons Bologna and the production of mini-bakeries. Since then, Mr. Skurihin not appear in court and ignored the requirement to disclose their assets, for showing disrespect British court sentenced him in absentia in November 2014 to 16 months in prison. Now the businessman threatened with punishment in Liechtenstein: the laws of the principality condition for attracting him to criminal liability is to present evidence that the purpose of the criminal action has been achieved in Liechtenstein. Meanwhile, there are suspicions that virtually all assets were precisely Berenger Foundation.

Mister Skurihin told "Kommersant" that he knew nothing about the claims on the part of law enforcement officers of the principality, but because anything he does not intend to comment. He also declined to say what the lawyers to represent him.

In turn, VTB confirmed the prosecutor's office of the excitation of criminal case against Liechtenstein SAHO beneficiary. "We expect that this process will lead to a return of SAHO Group bank debt", - said the representative of the credit institution, adding that he will continue laggingivat their interests in court. They also stressed that VTB does not see from Mr. Skurikhina "desire for dialogue and action aimed at the repayment of the debt." Interestingly, earlier, when a London court ruled his sentence, the businessman claimed that allegedly is in the "settlement process" of debt, and the issue can be resolved only within the framework of "constructive uniquely amicable dialogue."