New Imedi Owner Claims Right to Manage Patarkatsishvili’s Assets
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 27 Mar.'08 / 12:53
Joseph Kay has promised not to interfere in Imedi TV's
editorial policy. Photo: InterPressNews

Joseph Kay, who claims to be the new owner of Imedi TV, said Boris Berezovsky had been engaged in a plot to seize Badri Patarkatsishvili’s assets.

In an interview with the Russian daily Kommersant, Kay, alias Kakalashvili, who is Patarkatsishvili’s step cousin, claimed that he had power of attorney to manage Patarkatsishvili’s assets in accordance with the late tycoon’s will. Patarkatsishvili’s widow, Inna Gudavadze, however, has accused Kay of an attempt to seize Patarkatsishvili’s assets through “falsification of documents.” Berezovsky made similar accusations in an interview with the Georgian television station, Rustavi 2.

Kay said that Berezovsky – “whom I prefer to call the Devil” – wanted him to travel to Belarus to get rid of him by having him jailed there. Kay said that his lawyer, Emanuel Zeltser, went to Belarus where he was arrested just after exiting a plane on the request of Berezovsky.

“Emanuel Zeltser was Badri Patarkatsishvili’s lawyer for about 13 or 14 years,” Kay said. “A day or two after Badri’s death, Mr. Zeltser came to me and told me about Badri Patarkatsishvili’s will. He [Patarkatsishvili] wrote the will in New York at Zeltser’s office. I do not know the exact date, but it was last November… Mr. Zeltser came to me [after Patarkatsishvili’s death in February] and showed me the will, which grants me the power of attorney, giving me the authority to manage all of his [Patarkatsishvili’s] property. The will mandates me to collect all of Badri’s assets and properties and to then distribute them in accordance with the will.”

Kay said the will dictated that Patarkatsishvili’s assets be distributed among his close relatives, but he did not give details, saying that “the courts should first confirm my power of attorney.” He, however, said he did not know which court his lawyer, Zeltser, had appealed to.

Kay also claimed that Zeltser went to Belarus because Berezovsky had told him to clarify the situation with an oil refinery there which was owned by Patarkatsishvili. “Berezovsky told Zeltser that I should go to Belarus. So he wanted me to be arrested there. But eventually Zeltser went there. There were three people on the plane: Zeltser, [Zeltser’s secretary Vladlena] Funk and an Israeli citizen, Berezovsky’s associate Anatoly Motkin, who was in charge of Badri Patarkatsishvili’s election campaign [in Georgia’s January 5 presidential election]. Motkin was not arrested. So I want to ask: if those papers about my power of attorney were forged, why didn't this Devil have my people arrested in London or New York?”

In the interview with the Kommersant, Kay said he did not want to speak much about his deal involving Imedi TV, but said he bought the shares “legally.” He, however, declined to disclose the sum, saying it was “a commercial secret.”

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