Leading global law firm Baker McKenzie has successfully defended proprietary and unjust enrichment claims before the English Commercial Court on behalf of its client Prandicle Limited, a company beneficially owned by Mr Oleh Dubyna, a former Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine and the former CEO of Ukraine’s national oil and gas company Naftogaz. 

Following an eight week trial in October and November 2019, all claims against Prandicle were dismissed by Mr Justice Picken on 14 July 2020. Prandicle’s costs of the litigation are to be paid on an indemnity basis by Mr Sergiy Taruta and his corporate vehicles, reflecting the unsatisfactory and dishonest manner in which they pursued the claims against Prandicle.

The complex, multi-billion dollar litigation – involving claims under Ukrainian and English law - arose out of the separation of the joint business interests of three Ukrainian businessmen. 

The Baker McKenzie team was led by partner Hugh Lyons, alongside senior associates Ben Ko and Anjuli Patel and associate Emma Brown (all London). The team also comprised Kiev-based partner Ihor Siusel and associate Olesya Omelyanovich. The counsel team was led by Stephen Smith QC of Erskine Chambers, supported by Peter Ratcliffe of 3 Verulam Buildings.

This result is another example of the bench strength and high success rate of the commercial litigation practice and of the Dispute Resolution team in London, generally. The team was further strengthened with the announcement last week of the hiring of Marc Thorley in September from Simmons & Simmons. This was in addition to the appointment of Marc Florent from Allen & Overy in September 2019.
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