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Tue 22 Oct 2019 06:52 PM

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$1.9m art collection once owned by ex-Abraaj head to be auctioned

Christie's to sell 19 works which were once part of collection owned by Arif Naqvi

$1.9m art collection once owned by ex-Abraaj head to be auctioned

Naqvi was the head of Dubai-based Abraaj, which collapsed last year due to financial mismanagement and allegations of fraud.

Art works once owned by the former head of the now-defunct Abraaj Group are to go under the hammer at Christie's on Wednesday.

The auctioneer has not named the owner of 19 works in its forthcoming sale of Middle Eastern, modern and contemporary art sale, but reports say they are part of the collection of Arif Naqvi worth £1.5 million ($1.94 million).

The UK-based Times newspaper said the 19 lots, which include a striking sleeping nude figure by Mahmoud Said worth an estimated £250,000, were all pictured in a book of the Naqvi art collection published in 2015.

He told the paper that he did not wish to speak about the sale. “I’d rather not and it’s not my art collection,” it quoted him as saying.

Naqvi was the head of Dubai-based Abraaj, which collapsed last year due to financial mismanagement and allegations of fraud. He is currently living in London, where he awaits a ruling about US extradition.

Naqvi faces fraud allegations in the US. In London, he was granted conditional bail in May after paying the largest security bond ever ordered in the UK.

Naqvi maintains his innocence and expects to be cleared of any charges, his spokesman has previously said.

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