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Unfair borrower keeps trying to illegally deprive UniCredit Bank of its property

21.09.2015

PJSC "Ukrsotsbank" came up with an official letter to the President of Ukraine, the Prosecutor General of Ukraine, heads of the Supreme Council of Justice and High Qualification Commission of Judges of Ukraine to pay attention to the illegal actions of one of the largest borrowers of the bank – a group of companies "ISA Prime Developments" – and to ensure fair proceedings in court with the guarantee of protection of the bank’s rights as one of the largest creditors of the Ukrainian economy.

As it is known, for many years the bank has been employing every possible legal way to get "ISA Prime Developments" repay their debt totaling USD 200 million, resulting from a loan taken by the group of companies to finance construction of commercial real estate in Kyiv. The bank faced the reluctance of borrowers to repay the loan along with illegal attempts to withdraw the pledged property from the bank collateral.

Namely, without any prior consent of the bank, the borrower brought onboard LLC "Project-A" for construction works at the pledged property. This company is associated with Mr. S. Osmukhin, chairman of the Supervisory Board at PJSC "Fineksbank". The company was using illegal decision of the Economic Court and attempted to prove its right to the property and to deprive the bank of collateral. Eventually, an investment agreement with "Project-A" and a mortgage contract with JSC "Fineksbank" were declared invalid by the courts of all instances.

Today, without any legal basis, LLC "Project-A" is trying to deprive PJSC "Ukrsotsbank" of the property that became legally owned by the bank as a result of foreclosure. Attempting to do so, the attorney Mykola Melnyk, a personal assistant to Igor Popov, a member of the Ukrainian Parliament, filed a request to review the evaluation report on mortgage assets dating back as far as to 2012. This gave grounds for an appeal to review the three-year-old decision by the Economic Court based on "newly discovered" circumstances.

Based on the latter, the Economic Court of Kyiv has received several more requests over the last few weeks asking to review court decisions claiming the contract with LLC "Project-A" and a mortgage contract with JSC "Fineksbank" invalid as well as to reconsider recognition of the bank’s ownership of mortgage property.

Notably, LLC "Project-A" and JSC "Fineksbank" kept filing repetitive appeals to court, which clearly testified to the employment of a scheme aimed at selecting a particular judge. As a result, the selected judge in violation of the law accepted an appeal of LLC "Project-A" and scheduled a court hearing without any case materials, which were studied by the Court of Appeal at that time.

Even more troubling is the legally ungrounded decision by Chernihiv District Administrative Court dated September 16, 2015, regarding the appeal of LLC "Project-A" (whose interests were represented by another assistant of Mr. Popov – Anatolii Demenko) to the Main Department of Justice in Kyiv, whereby the court ruled to cancel the state registration of bank’s ownership right for a nonresidential building at 12, Amosova str., Kyiv. In violation of the law, the judge did not admit representatives of the bank to the trial, concluding that the cancellation of the bank’s property registration will not affect its rights and obligations.

It should be noted that this time the lawsuit was filed 12 times and LLC "Project-A" changed its name to LLC "ProjectA" registered in Nizhyn, Chernihivska oblast.

In light of the aforementioned facts, PJSC "Ukrsotsbank" as part of the international financial group UniCredit with impeccable reputation in the European market, which makes significant investments in the economy of Ukraine and acts as a strategic partner of Ukraine on its European integration path, expresses deep concern with legitimacy of actions of certain judges and protection of creditors' rights in the country.

 

NOTE

Ukrsotsbank is one of the largest universal banks of Ukraine, operating in the local market since 1990. The bank offers full range of services to individuals and corporate clients.

The renovated Ukrsotsbank emerged on 31 October 2016 as a result of strategic deal whereby 99.9% of Ukrsotsbank shares have been transferred from UniCredit Group to ABH Holdings S.A. (АВНН) in exchange for a minority 9.9% stake in ABHH. Thus, the bank has combined 26-year-old traditions of Ukrsotsbank’s client-centric attitude, European quality of service inherent to UniCredit, as well as international banking expertise of ABHH in a number of European countries including CIS. Thanks to the successful synthesis and synergy of the two assets of ABHH in Ukraine, Ukrsotsbank and Alfa-Bank, the banking market of Ukraine will see the rise of a new stronger financial institution. This, in turn, will spur up technological advance, increase efficiency, improve quality of service for the clients, reduce cost of banking services whereas their range will inevitably expand.

The extensive retail network of Ukrsotsbank consists of 237 branches, its headcount reaching nearly 5 thousand employees.


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