Lawyers for the Russian government and former shareholders of defunct Russian oil giant Yukos are back in court in what could be the final stages of a $50 billion battle over ex-tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky’s once-massive energy company.
The group, led by the former main shareholder GML, are appealing a Dutch court's April 2016 decision to overturn an award of more than $50 billion in damages that the Russian government had been ordered to pay the former shareholders.
The Dutch court said the arbitration panel that originally ruled in favor of the former shareholders in 2014 had lacked jurisdiction to make such an award.
During a hearing on the case on January 16, a judge told lawyers for the shareholders to submit their arguments for the latest appeal by January 31.
Court participants said it could be several months before an actual hearing date is set.
Yukos, once Russia’s largest oil company, was broken up after Khodorkovsky, a leading Kremlin critic, was arrested in 2003.
Yukos was sold off to state-owned companies, including Rosneft, now one of the world’s largest energy companies.
The former Yukos shareholders say the company was illegally broken up in a political move and sued in 2005 for compensation for their loss.