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Top court dismisses KMG International and Oilfield Exploration challenges to DIICOT lien on Rompetrol assets

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The High Court of Cassation and Justice dismissed as ungrounded the challenges filed by Oilfield Exploration Business Solutions SA, Rompetrol Rafinare SA and KMG International N.V. to the May 6, 2016 warrant of lien issued by the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) for the recovery of approximately 1.7 million lei, 291 million dollars and 35 million euro. 

The ruling handed down on Tuesday by the Council Chamber is final. 

On May 9, 2016 DIICOT prosecutors ordered a lien on the Petromidia refinery in a criminal case concerning the privatization of this capacity. The case is disconnected from the Rompetrol case in which meanwhile deceased businessman Dinu Patriciu was also a defendant. 

The lien was placed on movable and immovable assets of KazMunayGas International NV, SC Oilfield Exploration Business Solutions SA and SC Rompetrol Rafinare SA for the recovery of 1,724,168.825 lei, 290,786,616 US dollars and 34,941,924 euro. 

According to DIICOT, 14 were indicted for setting up an organized criminal group, abuse of office, fraud, embezzlement, tax evasion, money laundering, manipulation of the capital market through transactions or trading orders. 

On the same day, KazMunayGas and KMG International announced in a release that at the time of the acquisition of The Rompetrol Group NV stock (in 2007) they had not been officially notified of investigations being conducted into activities from 1998 - 2003, stressing they would resort to all local and international legal mechanisms to protect their investment made at the time of the purchase of the stock.

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