Support The Moscow Times!

Rybolovlev $88M Apartment Buy Disputed

Dmitry Rybolovlev, worth an estimated $9 billion and the world's 100th-richest person according to Forbes, formed a sham entity to buy a Manhattan penthouse for his daughter Yekaterina solely to shield it from his wife Yelena in divorce proceedings, according to a lawsuit filed last week in a New York state court in Manhattan.

Yelena Rybolovleva said she began divorce proceedings in Switzerland in 2008 after 21 years of marriage and that a Geneva court later imposed a freeze on some of her husband's assets.

Despite this, she said her husband has been using marital property to buy a multitude of other assets through a variety of trusts and limited liability companies, hoping to put those assets beyond her reach.

Rybolovleva said those assets include majority ownership in French football club AS Monaco, a $295 million stake in Bank of Cyprus and a $95 million Palm Beach, Florida, home purchased from Donald Trump.

"She wants her fair share," said David Newman, a partner at Day Pitney in New York who represents Rybolovleva. "She hopes to get a substantial judgment in the Swiss divorce, and if there are no assets or only a small amount of  assets from which to satisfy it, it's a Pyrrhic victory."

Rybolovleva has filed a similar lawsuit in Florida over the Palm Beach home.

The Feb. 15 purchase of the penthouse for $88 million from former Citigroup chief executive Sanford "Sandy" Weill and his wife Joan has been described as the highest price ever paid for a Manhattan apartment.

Read more

The need for honest and objective information on Russia is more relevant now than ever before!

To keep our newsroom in Moscow running, we need your support.