Oligarch 'tipped off' about assassination


Oleg Deripaska: Russia's richest man being sued for £1.5 billion

A High Court judge has ruled that a Russian oligarch linked to a leading Labour MP faced the risk of assassination – after accepting evidence based on tip-offs from the intelligence services.

Mr Justice Christopher Clarke decided last week that a multi-billion-pound court case between Michael Cherney, an aluminium tycoon, and Oleg Deripaska, Russia’s richest man, should not be held in Moscow because there was a risk to Mr Cherney of ‘assassination, arrest on trumped-up charges and lack of a fair trial’.

The extraordinary judgment followed last week’s Mail on Sunday report that Labour MP Andrew Mackinlay had allegedly been named as the target of a ‘dirty tricks’ campaign by Mr Deripaska’s aides.

The Bulgarian paper Standart claimed the aides had tried to use Mr Mackinlay in a ‘black propaganda’ campaign against Mr Cherney.

The plan was drawn up shortly before Mr Mackinlay was carpeted by Labour Chief Whip Geoff Hoon for meeting a Russian spy at the House of Commons.

In his judgment, Mr Justice Clarke said: ‘Mr Cherney has a well-founded fear for his safety.’

Mr Cherney is suing Mr Deripaska for £1.5 billion he says he is owed from a 2001 business agreement, and had applied for the case to be heard in London rather than Moscow.

A spokesman for Israel-based Mr Cherney said the decision had been based on evidence submitted by Mr Cherney ‘which in part referred to what he had been told by intelligence sources’. Mr Mackinlay declined to comment last night on the judgment.


Andrew MacKinlay MP was allegedly a target of a 'dirty tricks' campaign

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