(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
LONDON – The case of two Israeli businessmen and a dispute over $270 million
will reach the Supreme Court of the State of New York on Wednesday, with one
party questioning the court’s jurisdiction and demanding proceedings take place
in Israel so as to avoid the American court.
The court will hear an
anti-suit injunction – a court order that prevents an opposing party from
commencing or continuing a proceeding in another jurisdiction – issued by
Michael Cherney, originally from Uzbekistan and now living in Israel, against
Alexander Gliklad, a Ukrainian-born Israeli living in New York.
is attempting to take legal action against Gliklad to counter a pending process
in New York that Gliklad brought against him in July 2009.
accuses Cherney of owing him $270m., in accordance with a signed agreement for a
stake in the Russian coal-producing organization Kuzbassrazrezugol, a former
state enterprise privatized in the early 1990s.
In response to the suit
filed against him, Cherney filed a writ in which he claimed he had given the
money to Gliklad and that he, Cherney, was now the one owed the $270m. This is
disputed by Gliklad, who has pointed out that if Cherney were owed the money he
claims, he would have sought to enforce the debt at least once since it was
signed in 2003.
Cherney also claims he mistakenly signed the agreement
with Gliklad in the wrong place as the borrower, even though it was in Russian,
his mother tongue.
Cherney also sought a dismissal of the case, claiming
forum non conveniens – where courts can refuse to take jurisdiction over matters
where there is a more appropriate forum available to the parties. He maintains
he has no connection to New York, despite his consent to its jurisdiction in the
He has also been accused of changing a clause in the agreement
in order to show that he did not consent to jurisdiction in New York, while also
accusing Gliklad of forging a statement, though it was done under the
supervision of the international law firm Winston and Strawn LLP.