Home Estate Planning Revolut account closure lawsuit from late Russian oligarch’s son-in-law struck out by High Court

Revolut account closure lawsuit from late Russian oligarch’s son-in-law struck out by High Court

0 comment

A High Court judge has struck out a case brought by the son-in-law of a late Russian oligarch against Revolut for “unlawfully” closing his account.

Ildar Uzbekov, the Kazakhstan-born British citizen, brought a breach of contract claim against the fintech last April for shutting his account in April 2020 and reversing £11,000 worth of payments tied to the sale of a Range Rover.

Uzbekov’s lawyer told the High Court in London last week that Revolut gave no explanation for closing his account but that it seemed “to have resulted from factual mistakes made by Revolut, a coordinated media campaign against him and Revolut’s approach to these issues”.

However, Mr Justice Chamberlain sided with Revolut on Thursday and ruled that the case be struck out as an abuse of process.

He argued the lawsuit’s impact on court resources would be “disproportionate” to the “marginal objective benefit” if Uzbekov were to win.

The court heard Uzbekov was the subject of a “malicious and spurious campaign aimed in part at debanking him and making his position in the UK untenable” and that Revolut took allegations and smears “at face value”.

Mr Justice Chamberlain said there was no evidence to support Uzbekov’s suggestion that the account closure could have been linked to his ethnicity.

Tony Singla KC of Brick Court Chambers, representing Revolut, told the court that the lawsuit “appears to be motivated by the fact that the claimant has experienced numerous bank account closures in the UK”.

He added that Revolut believed keeping Uzbekov’s account “might damage its reputation and goodwill” amid suspicion from financial investigators that he may have been involved in money laundering.

Mr Justice Chamberlain ruled that a determination of breach of contract allegations would not have established “the falsity of the underlying allegations” against Uzbekov or “vindicate” his reputation, which could instead be sought through a defamation case.

The judge added that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) was “well placed to consider systemic issues” over the improper closure of accounts, with Uzbekov not having made a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

He said: “The facts that no such complaint was made, and that Mr Uzbekov waited more than three years before bringing this claim, both diminish the public interest justification for the deployment of substantial judicial resources on a detailed exploration of the alleged breach of contract in this case.”

Accordingly, the court concluded that the “game was not worth the candle” and the judge ruled that the claim ought to be struck out.

Revolut declined to comment on the ruling when approached by City A.M. – Keystone Law, the legal representative for Uzbekov, was contacted for his comment.

You may also like

Leave a Comment

Are you sure want to unlock this post?
Unlock left : 0
Are you sure want to cancel subscription?