Leviev Petitions to Enforce Arbitration Award Against Julius Klein

Reports say the award exceeds $100 million

Lev Leviev’s company has gone to federal court to enforce an international arbitration award against Julius Klein Group (JKG) that reports claim exceeds $100 million.

In heavily redacted court papers filed in New York federal court, LGC USA, owned by Leviev, asserts that it tried to dissolve its decade-old partnership with JKG in 2012 in what what was then described as a “messy public divorce.” In May 2013, LGC initiated arbitration—which included a weeklong hearing in Israel—to resolve a dispute over the buyout and purchase price, according to the filing. On June 30, a three-person panel, all with experience in the diamond industry, issued an award in LGC’s favor, the petition claims.

JKG has contested the award, arguing—among other claims—that the arbitration should be ruled invalid, as one of the arbitrators was convicted of tax-related offenses in Belgium. (LGC responds that the “charges have nothing to do with this case.”) JKG also cried foul that the convicted arbitrator had business ties to LGC’s chosen arbitrator.  LGC responded that the Klein Group has no evidence the arbitrator did not act impartially.

Julius Klein has filed a motion to dismiss LGC’s petition. Its lawyer did not respond to a request for comment.

JCK News Director