The editorial board of the Internet publication Obozrevatel has accused businessman Pavel Fuks of trying to "seize" the publication with the help of a raider scheme.
The corresponding appeal is published on the publication website. Addressing President Volodymyr Zelensky, journalists, human rights defenders and people's deputies, the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC), the High Council of Justice and others, the Obozrevatel wants to defend against possible seizure attempts. The businessman himself denies the attempt of "seizure".
The journalists say that this is due to the publication of their articles about Fuks: "for two years we have been collecting information about whose debts Fuks bought, how he got the enterprises, for what he was arrested in absentia in Russia, did he really have any connections with Russian special services". After that, the businessman filed a lawsuit against the publication and won it.
At the same time, the editorial board does not agree with the decision to pay compensation and, moreover, cannot fulfill it, since the businessman and his lawyers did not provide bank details and did not contact the executive service, as it should have been done. In turn, Fuks' lawyers are trying to prove in the Economic Court of the Kyiv region that the publishing company Zolota Seredyna cannot pay compensation, and are seeking its bankruptcy, blocking the possibility of executing the court's decision. Journalists claim that Fuks has spent about 2 million UAH on the "war" with the Obozrevatel and intends to return this money.
"Fuchs is known for his closeness to the Opposition Platform—For Life, many sources even call him one of the Opposition Bloc investors. After the known decision of the NSDC on sanctions against three Medvedchuk’s channels [Viktor Medvedchuk—], the pro-Russian lobby, apparently, needed to update the portfolio of media assets," the publication concluded, appealing to the NSDC to pay attention to "another threat to information market, coming from the fifth column and the half-reformed judicial system of the country".
Fuks' response to the Obozrevatel scandal
In his Telegram channel, Fuks denied information about an alleged attempt to seize the publication. According to him, he "acts exclusively in the legal field and protects his business reputation."
"The Court found a number of fakes that the Obozrevatel published over the years as unreliable and dishonoring my business reputation," the businessman said, explaining that the Court ordered the publication to publish a refutation and recovered a million hryvnyas as compensation for moral damage. According to him, on December 23, 2020, the panel of judges of the Court of Appeal reduced the amount of compensation to 300,000 UAH.
This did not help the Obozrevatel, therefore, on February 23, 2021, the Economic Court began proceedings on the bankruptcy of the company Zolota Seredyna. The bankruptcy hearing is scheduled for March 11, 2021," Fuks added.
Context. The NSDC made a decision to impose sanctions against the people's deputy Taras Kozak and Medvedchuk's TV channels: 112 Ukraine, NewsOne, and ZIK for a period of five years. The Head of state put this decision into effect.