Thursday, November 3, 2011

Abramovich Explains “Krysha” Concept to London Court

Russian multi-billionaire Roman Abramovich testified in London's High Court that he was not a partner of fugitive Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky in the 1990s (contrary to Berezovsky's assertion in his claim to a share in Abramovich’s assets). Rather, Abramovich testified that Berezovsky only provided krysha (criminal slang for "roof" or protection), for which Abramovich has already paid him at least hundreds of millions of dollars. Abramovich explained “krysha” in considerable detail: it was necessary to have physical protection as anyone with a business capable of generating strong cashflow was vulnerable to criminal interference, including potential violence. "My krysha relationship with Mr Berezovsky could be described as a relationship with someone who could use his political connections to solve certain problems and get compensated for his efforts. There was a lot of krysha activity in Russia at that time which was well outside the law and was little more than criminal extortion. That was how krysha worked: so long as one's protector provided the services necessary to maintain the particular business, you were expected to pay whatever he asked, whenever he asked”. Abramovich added that “the concept of krysha did not envisage the possibility to terminate the relation unilaterally.”

UPDATE (2012):
Russian Oligarch Roman Abromovich Prevails in London Lawsuit

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