Sep 22 2012
Russia threatens legal action against Queen’s cousin, Viscount Linley, to recover £400,000 loan from Moscow bank.
The Daily Mail
The Russian authorities are threatening legal action in Britain to recover a £400,000 loan by a Moscow bank to the Queen’s cousin Viscount Linley’s bespoke furniture business.
Such a step – which would be highly embarrassing to the Royal Family – is being mooted because the up-market interior design company has failed to heed a demand to repay the cash, say officials in Moscow.
Lord Linley, at whose French retreat the Duchess of Cambridge was recently controversially photographed topless, originally took the five year loan in 2009 from a bank linked to Russian tycoon Sergei Pugachev, once close to President Vladimir Putin and dubbed the ‘cashier to the Kremlin’.
The bank, called Mezhprombank, has since gone into liquidation and its affairs are now entirely controlled by the Russian government’s Deposit Insurance Agency.
In a statement a spokesman said: ‘So far the Deposit Insurance Agency has failed to recover the loan given by the bankrupt Mezhprombank to the British company David Linley & Company Limited.
‘The Agency has also failed to conclude an agreement with this company and at the moment the jurisdiction of the future dispute is being studied.
Lord Linley originally took the five year loan in 2009 from a bank linked to Russian tycoon Serei Pugachev (Left) once close to President Vladimir Putin (Right)
The Agency is also investigating the possibilities of the future implementation of a court decision in the country where the company-borrower is registered, namely the United Kingdom.’
After the Russian Agency went public last year on the dispute, the Linley company repaid an outstanding sum for interest payments, it is understood.
This is believed to amount to around £22,000 per annum, though the exact figure paid, and the period it covered, is not known.
The loan is not due to expire until 2014 but the Agency – tasked by the Kremlin with controlling the affairs of banks in financial trouble – says it is entitled to ask for full repayment now because the security on which it was based now has no value due to Mezhprombank’s failure.
Sources say its first step would be a court decision in Moscow allowing it to seek to recover the money in London from the UK company.
The agency is now making the new threat of actively probing all options on how to enforce such a decision in Britain. This dashes hopes of the royal’s company that the interest repayments would satisfy the Russians until 2014.
The loan deal was struck after friendship developed between Lord Linley and his ‘perfect partner’ Pugachev.
They shared hunting trips in Siberia and Britain, and the publicity-shy Russian businessman became a director of the Linley furniture business, a position he abruptly left in August 2011.
The tycoon – who has three young children with glamorous British TV horse show presenter Alexandra Tolstoy – now mainly lives outside Russia and is no longer connected to the business run by the late Princess Margaret’s son.
In September last year British yacht broker Jamie Edmiston was appointed chief executive and gained 60 per cent of David Linley Holdings in return for a £4 million injection.
Accounts up to June 2011 show David Linley Holdings Ltd was owed £3,071,651 by subsidiary company David Linley and Company Ltd.
In April this year Edmiston denied a rift with Lord Linley and also indicated the Russian loan would be repaid – but only in 2014, an arrangement that is not acceptable to the Russians.
‘We’ve been working extremely closely together. I’ve invested heavily and together we’re creating an opportunity to develop this business for the next 25 years. I truly believe we can create a British Hermes,’ he said.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2206674/Russia-threatens-legal-action-Queen-s-cousin-Viscount-Linley-recover-400-000-loan-Moscow-bank.html#ixzz27F3ik4U3
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