Russian billionaire’s son ran up £35m trading losses while a student, divorce hearing told
A Russian billionaire’s son lost more than £35 million trading in stocks and shares while he was a student, a High Court judge has heard.
Temur Akhmedov’s, whose parents bought him a £29 million flat in London when he was 19, traded while studying private banking at the London School of Economics (LSE) between 2013 and 2016, Mrs Justice Gwynneth Knowles was told.
Detail of his lifestyle, and trading losses, emerged at a public trial in the Family Division of the High Court in London on Monday, after he became embroiled in his parents’ divorce battle.
Tatiana Akhmedova 48, who is Russian but lives in London, is trying to get her hands on around £450 million she is owed by her ex-husband, 65-year-old Farkhad Akhmedov.
She has sued Temur, their eldest son, saying he has helped his father – who lives in Russia and was not at the hearing – hide assets and owes her nearly £70 million.
Temur just played an extremely active role in siding with my ex about the divorce. Trying to hide assets
Lawyers representing Ms Akhmedova told the judge, in a written case outline, that Temur had been given more than £90 million by his father.
Ms Akhmedova wants Mrs Justice Gwynneth Knowles to order Temur, who now works as a London trader, to hand about £69.3 million to her.
The judge heard that Temur, who denies allegations made against him and says his mother’s claim should be dismissed, had been “showered” with “unimaginable amounts of money” when his parents were together.
Lawyers representing Temur told how his parents had bought him a £29 million London flat when he was 19 and spent around £5 million on furnishings.
Barrister Robert Levy QC, who is leading Temur’s legal team, said he had been given a Mercedes costing in the region of £100,000 as a present after passing his driving test at 17.
Mr Levy described living expenses “beyond the experience” of those who do not “inhabit the world of the uber-rich” and said Temur had lost more than £35 million trading (50 million US dollars) in stocks and shares when a student at the LSE.
Ms Akhmedova said she had “regrettably” been “forced” to bring claims against Temur.
“Temur just played an extremely active role in siding with my ex about the divorce,” she told the judge.
“Trying to hide assets.”
Mrs Justice Knowles was told how a “draft message” had been found on Temur’s iPhone in 2015 which said Ms Akhmedova had been “unfaithful, dishonest and not clean”.
“As a Muslim, not a Russian, my father cannot tolerate this,” said the message.
Temur had a “last-minute, come-to-Jesus moment”, and decided to tell the truth, after being accused of not disclosing information, Mrs Justice Knowles was also told.
He had provided a new witness statement in which he admitted having breached a court order relating to the disclosure of information, but said he was now giving a “truthful account”.
Mr Levy said there had been a “last-minute, come-to-Jesus moment” but Temur’s mother said he had still not disclosed all assets and was continuing to lie.
Ms Akhmedova was awarded a 41.5% share of Mr Akhmedov’s £1 billion-plus fortune by another British judge in late 2016.
Mr Justice Haddon-Cave, who oversaw a hearing in London, said Ms Akhmedova should walk away with £453 million – the award is thought to be the biggest of its kind made in Britain.
But judges have heard that she has so far pocketed about £5 million and that Mr Akhmedov has not “voluntarily” paid a penny.
Ms Akhmedova says Mr Akhmedov has tried to put assets beyond her reach and she has taken legal action in Britain and abroad in a bid to get hold of what she is owed.
Mr Akhmedov says because he and his ex-wife are not British and were not married in Britain, a British judge should not have made a decision.
Ms Akhmedova has already become embroiled in litigation with a number of trusts based in Liechtenstein, into which Mr Akhmedov has transferred assets.
Mrs Justice Knowles had been told how Mr Akhmedov had transferred a super-yacht, the Luna, worth around £340 million, and an art collection, worth around £110 million, into the ownership of trusts in Liechtenstein.