February 26, 2021

Anticorruption requests the imputation of the owner of Dia for acquiring Zed at "a ridiculous price"


The Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office asked the judge of the National Court Manuel García Castellón on Monday that Cite to declare the Russian billionaire and top Dia shareholder Mikhail Fridman as investigated, for leading a series of actions to take advantage of the bankruptcy of the Spanish company Zed WorlWide and acquire it for 20 million euros, "a ridiculous price."

Prosecutor José Grinda has sent a letter to the head of the Central Court of Instruction number 6, to which Europa Press has had access, explaining that the Russian businessman «Has control of events, which together with the conduct of other investigators, resulted in the insolvency of Zed WordWide », chaired by Javier Pérez-Dolset.

The representative of the Public Prosecutor's Office has considered that the purpose of Fridman's decisions was “the total seizure of a company through a complex procedure that uses performances of different intensity, executed in various lines and culminating in a situation of institutional and economic blockade of the company (insolvency), to acquire it at a ridiculous price much lower than the market ».


The paper notes that from the analysis of all the information obtained throughout this instruction it can be deduced that the Russian investor led «A practice that is known in the Russian criminal environment as 'raider' (assault or attack) or illegal absorption of companies ».

In November 2017, a few months after operating the Hanta operation for which it was arrested Javier Pérez Dolset, Fridman sent a letter to the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office in which he separated himself from any responsibility in the business decisions that could have resulted in the Zed Worldwide insolvency in Spain under investigation.

However, a recent police report that works in the summary and to which Europa Press had access questions that version by holding, with a detailed analysis of the operation of the companies as well as with WhatsApp messages and emails from different stakeholders, that Fridman it shows «The factual and direct power» on the directors and the decisions they adopted causing a property damage to the Spanish shareholders of Zed.

The prosecutor describes in the brief sent to the magistrate instructor all the operation carried out, noting that Fridman reached a «Privileged position in the face of any type of decision ”of the Zed Group when it became one of the main creditors of the company in 2013. The Amsterdam Trade Bank lender, one of which lent money to the technology to carry out the «Zeus Project», with which it was planned to go public in the US market Nasdaq, belonged to a group whose owner is the Russian businessman.

«Pressure and economic drowning»

This adds to a "pressure and economic drowning" action for Zed WorlWide that was developed by other Russian partners, with whom a «Illegal payment interruption strategy of dividends of the Russian subsidiaries that resulted in a total lack of liquidity ».

On the other hand, other of Fridman's societies, Vimpelcom, took advantage of the situation of «Uncontrolled and irregularity» of the Zed Group to "reduce or eliminate" the contracts signed with the Cypriot group Temafon, from which Pérez-Dolset's technology company had acquired 50.10% of its capital in 2009, without evidence that there had been a breach of the objective, not even a defective provision of the agreed obligations.

According to the prosecutor, the goal was to achieve "Economic suffocation" of Zed with the "loss of capital in alleged illegal commissions." In this regard, it stands out that Fridman was knowledgeable about credit obligations that the Spanish group had contracted, as well as its «impossibility of dealing with this loan if there was a significant reduction in income from the Russian market».

The situation of corporate paralysis, lack of liquidity, blocking of external investors led the Spanish company to insolvency, which resulted in a request for declaration of bankruptcy by Zed WorlWide on June 30, 2016. Four months later, lRussian investors submitted a purchase offer for an amount of 20 million euros, well below its value when the "maneuvers" of Mikhail Fridman began.

Finally, the prosecutor has also requested that he be summoned to testify as a witness to Edwin Harland, the forensic audit officer that was carried out to the Zed Group, after Vimpelcom will request an investigation on the management of Temafon before the «risk of misappropriation of assets».

. (tagsToTranslate) anti-corruption (t) possible (t) imputation (t) fridman

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