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Monday, August 17, 2009

Investor who controls a Swiss Bank called ASARCO "facing foreclosure seeks protection from creditors"

"Foreign investor Mikhail Katamanin, who in May was hit with a $12-million foreclosure lawsuit on his Highland Park mansion, filed a personal bankruptcy petition June 6 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Chicago. The little-known investor listed assets of $1 million to $10 million and liabilities of between $10 million and $50 million, according to the filing. His debts are described as “primarily consumer,” and the list of creditors includes Atlantis at Paradise Island Resort & Casino in the Bahamas, Caesars Palace Las Vegas Hotel & Casino and Trump Taj Mahal Casino Hotel in Atlantic City. Chicago lawyer Kori Bazanos, who represents Mr. Katamanin, declined to comment.

Related story: Lender asserts claim on lakefront mansion " (follows below)

Lender asserts claim on lakefront mansion

(Crain’s) — A Caribbean investment company has sued to collect on a $12-million loan to a little-known investor, asking the court to put a lien on a lakefront mansion in Highland Park.

Foreign investor Mikhail Katamanin took out the short-term loan in March 2008 from Plymouth Consultants Ltd., which is based in the British Virgin Islands, according to a complaint Plymouth filed May 1 in Lake County Circuit Court. The loan, which initially charged 15% interest, wasn’t paid off when it came due Jan. 7, Plymouth alleges.

Mr. Katamanin failed to put up as security a nearly 7,000-square-foot home at 975 Sheridan Road, as required by the loan, the complaint says. As a result, Plymouth is asking for a court-ordered lien on the two-story house, which has 4½ bathrooms, two fireplaces and a brick exterior, according to the Lake County Assessor.

The reason for the loan is not disclosed in the complaint. John F. Kennedy, a partner with Chicago firm Shefsky & Froelich Ltd., which represents Plymouth, declined to comment.

The property is held in trust by Swiss company Asarco A.G.[this BANK lists Asarco llc and Asarco SA under its nomiker], which Mr. Mikhail controls, according to the complaint and public records.

Mr. Katamanin lives next door, at 985 Sheridan Road, a 10,555-square-foot mansion with 5½ bathrooms, two fireplaces, a pool and a stucco exterior, according to the assessor.

Mr. Katamanin did not return calls requesting comment. Northbrook lawyer Irving Drobny, who represents Asarco, is out of the country until next week, according to employees at his office.[Irving Drobny also represents the Royal Family of Vietnam]

Mr. Katamanin has made two interest payments totaling about $1.67 million, according to the complaint.

The claim also is to be arbitrated in Switzerland, according to the complaint."

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