Addleshaws’ shtum on Ablyazov

Firm faces High Court questions after failing to disclose client details

Addleshaw Goddard could be asked to explain to the High Court why it did not disclose full contact details for its client, Kazakh billionaire Mukhtar Ablyazov, following a court order earlier this month.

The court gave the firm until 17 February to disclose “all historic and current contact details, including, but without limitation to, postal and email addresses and all telephone numbers and Skype account details which they hold for the first defendant [Ablyazov]”.

While it is understood that some details have been disclosed, there is an ongoing dispute between Addleshaws and Hogan Lovells, which is representing BTA Bank JSC on its $5bn (£3.13bn) claim against Ablyazov over the extent of the former firm’s knowledge.

It is understood that Hogan Lovells is preparing to apply for a second order to force Addleshaws to disclose further information.

“That case is yet to be listed,” said a source. “It will happen – Hogan Lovells is determined to get to the bottom of what Addleshaws knows.”

Hogan Lovells wants Ablyazov debarred from defending this year’s largest Commercial Court claim. The case, to be heard over four months from November, concerns claims that Ablyazov absconded from Kazakhstan after allegedly embezzling funds from BTA Bank, which he formerly chaired. He denies this, contending that he is the subject of political persecution.

Last week Mr Justice Teare said Ablyazov would be debarred if he loses an appeal against a committal order that he should be jailed for failure to disclose his full assets.