Muflis T Imar Bankasi TAS Iflas Idaresi v Uzans - District Court of Nicosia - Greek - 08 June 2021
Muflis T. Imar Bankasi T.A.S. Iflas Idaresi' in its capacity as a bankruptcy administrator of 'T. Imar Bankasi T.A.S.' represented by Tassaruf Mevduati Sigorta Fonu (Turkey) v. Uzan and Uzan (Paris) and Baferton Trading Ltd (Nicosia), District Court of Nicosia Civil Case No. 3130/2017.
On 17 August 2017 the law suit 'Muflis T. Imar Bankasi T.A.S. Iflas Idaresi' in its capacity as a bankruptcy administrator of 'T. Imar Bankasi T.A.S.' represented by Tassaruf Mevduati Sigorta Fonu (Turkey) v. Uzan and Uzan (Paris) and Baferton Trading Ltd (Nicosia)' was filed with the District Court of Nicosia. The Applicants request: (i) recognition of the judgment of 19.6.2013 of the Second Commercial Court of First Instance of Istanbul (Case No. 2013/147); (ii) declaratory judgment against Baferton Trading Ltd stating that it had been acting as the alter ego of the Uzans under the corporate veil of a legal person and that it had participated in fraudulent actions aiming to assist and/ or defraud creditors; and (iii) damages against Baferton Trading Ltd and/ or its officers for fraud, defrauding creditors and causing damage with illegal means.
On the same day, the Applicants filed an ex parte application requesting the following: (i) Mareva Injunction; (ii) Discovery Injunction; (iii) Injunction prohibiting the alienation of property of the Respondents; (iv) Norwich Pharmacal Injunction.
Only an interim judgment dated 8.6.2021 to the application for correcting clerical mistakes and/ or errors from accidental slip or omission of 26.2.2020 is publicly available. The case is pending.
The Uzans have been involved in a number of arbitral cases against Turkey for the same power companies under the ECT (Libananco, Cementownia Nowa Huta, Europe Cement, and Uzan). None of those were successful. In fact, the Cementownia Nowa Huta award is unique as the Tribunal made a declaration in favor of the Respondent and against the Claimant stating that the Claimant filed a fraudulent claim before ICSID.
Before these proceedings, the Uzans have been involved in a huge fraud, siphoning more than a billion dollars into their own pockets and into the coffers of other entities they controlled under the guise of obtaining financing for a Turkish telecommunications company (See Motorola Credit Corp. v. Uzan, 274 F. Supp. 2d 481 (S.D.N.Y. 2003), law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/FSupp2/274/481/2493622/)
The Cyprus proceedings relate to the collapse of the Imar Bank, were the regulators found that the Uzans stole more than USD 6 billion from depositors in the bank (See Ben Hallman, Turkish Bath, 2007 Steptoe & Johnson, www.steptoe.com/images/content/1/9/v1/1920/3080.pdf). It is odd that the bankruptcy administrator of Imar Bank, applicant in the Cyprus proceedings, requests solely the recognition of the Istanbul judgment, as the usual requests for enforcing a foreign award or judgment are recognition, registration and enforcement of the judgment at hand.
 See summary and award 'Libananco Holdings Co. Limited v Republic of Turkey - ICSID Case No. ARB/06/8 - Award September 2 2011' <https://www.transnational-dispute-management.com/legal-and-regulatory-detail.asp?key=6831>
 See summary and award 'Cementownia "Nowa Huta" v Republic of Turkey - ICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/06/2 - Award - 17 September 2009' <https://www.transnational-dispute-management.com/legal-and-regulatory-detail.asp?key=8946>
 See summary and award 'Europe Cement Investment & Trade S.A. v Republic of Turkey - ICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/07/2 - Award - 13 August 2009' <https://www.transnational-dispute-management.com/legal-and-regulatory-detail.asp?key=8947>
 See summary and award 'Cem Cengiz Uzan v Republic of Turkey - SCC Arbitration Case No V 2014/023 - Award on Respondent Bifurcated Preliminary Objection - 20 April 2016' <https://www.transnational-dispute-management.com/legal-and-regulatory-detail.asp?key=21913>