Court Orders Confiscation of Shopping Center Tied to Russian Oligarch in Kyiv

A Ukrainian court on Monday gave green light to confiscating a large Kyiv shopping center tied to a sanctioned Kremlin oligarch and his entourage, which used their Ukraine profits to fund Russia’s war machine.

According to a decision of the High Anti-Corruption Court of Ukraine, the government of Ukraine is allowed to confiscate two-thirds of the assets of Ocean Plaza from Arkady Rotenberg, who was designated by Ukrainian authorities in October 2022.

The defendants in the lawsuit filed by Ukraine’s Justice Ministry, namely Mr Rottenberg himself, his son Igor, and their Russian business partners Aleksandr Skorobahatko and Aleksandr Ponomarenko, can appeal the court’s decision, the Ministry said Monday.

Earlier, pursuant to the sanctions legislation, the Justice Ministry of Ukraine requested confiscation of 100 per cent of the authorized capital of Avangard-Vilarti LLC, a company linked to Mr Rottenberg through Cyprus offshore companies, and nearly 67 percent of the authorized capital of Investment Union Lybid LLC, the direct owner of Ocean Plaza, which in turn is owned by Avangard-Vilarti.

Located in Kyiv, Ocean Plaza is one of the largest Ukrainian shopping and entertainment centers. It stopped operating from February to November 2022, amid Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

At that time, the two-thirds of Investment Union Lybid were transferred to the Assets Tracing and Management Agency (ARMA), a body within Ukraine’s anti-corruption structure that deals with assets arrested or confiscated as part of anti-graft probes.

A chain of companies had been transferring Ocean Plaza profits to Mr Rottenber’s family business, whose son used the money to purchase two cartridge factories in Russia that manufactured weapons for the Russian military-industrial complex, the Trap Aggressor project reported.