A $300 million bounced cheque case against Abraaj founder Arif Naqvi has been settled out of court after an agreement between both parties was reached, Arabian Business has learnt.
The claimant in the case, Crescent Group founder Hamid Jafar, reached an agreement on an out-of-court settlement last week, ahead of a planned court session on Thursday, sources familiar with the negotiations told Arabian Business.
The case was formally dropped by a Sharjah court on Sunday morning, and the arrest order was also lifted.
“The court’s verdict is to extinguish the criminal case,” said Habib Al Mulla, the chief executive of law firm Baker McKenzie, who was representing Naqvi in court.
“This is based on the claimant relinquishing his demand based on the settlement [that was] reached. The settlement included the total sum of the $300 million.
“We are happy this was amicably settled because this was originally a commercial case and from the beginning should have been settled amicably,” Al Mulla added.
If the case had proceeded, Naqvi would have been facing up to three years in prison for allegedly issuing three cheques without sufficient funds in the bank.
Key investors in a $1 billion healthcare fund managed by the firm – including Bill and Melinda Gates and an affiliate of the World Bank – demanded an inquiry be made into allegations that money from the fund had been mispresented.
Abraaj has so far denied any wrongdoing.
Naqvi, 57, remains outside the UAE after a public prosecutor issued a warrant for his arrest.For all the latest banking and finance news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
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