Independent businessman and philanthropist.

Ziyavudin Magomedov is a successful Russian businessman and entrepreneur. In March 2018, he was arrested on unevidenced and incoherent embezzlement charges, having fallen foul of individuals and companies trying to steal his fortune in a conspiracy with actors inside the Russian state.
Who is

Ziyavudin Magomedov

Ziyavudin Magomedov is a successful independent businessman and philanthropist.

Born in 1968 and brought up in Dagestan, an ancient region in the Russian Caucasus, he graduated with a degree in International Economics from Moscow State University in 1993.

Legal position

Following his arrest, he remained imprisoned without trial in Lefortovo, the notoriously austere Moscow detention centre run by the FSB, Russia’s secret intelligence service. While in prison, the Russian criminal courts ordered the confiscation of his assets worth billions of dollars. At the same time, corporate raiders aided by elements with senior Russian government connections sought to unlawfully dismantle his business empire.

Some of his assets are now the subject of a claim in the UK and are estimated to have a value of at least $13.8 billion. Beyond that, Mr Magomedov held substantial additional assets, including grain terminals, that were expropriated and are understood to have fallen into the hands of well-connected figures in the Russian establishment. Since the conflict in Ukraine began, these assets have frequently been mentioned for their strategic importance to Russia’s war effort. Mr Magomedov reserves the right to pursue additional legal remedies in England (or elsewhere) in relation to these assets. Such a step could see the estimated value of his claims rise to at least $30 billion.

Following a trial behind closed doors in December 2022, Mr Magomedov was handed a 19-year jail sentence by a Moscow judge whose verdict uncritically endorsed the prosecution’s case. Mr Magomedov strongly denies any wrongdoing.


Both his conviction and the confiscations are being appealed, and Mr Magomedov has already scored some victories in jurisdictions including the UK and British Virgin Islands. As part of his fightback, he is also bringing an unlawful means conspiracy claim in the English High Court. He is seeking $13.8 billion in damages and equitable compensation from defendants accused of conspiring against him.

Those defendants include a number of high-profile Russian and international businesses, including US private equity firm Texas Pacific Group (TPG), the UAE-based logistics giant DP World and Russian state nuclear energy corporation ROSATOM, as well as several of Mr Magomedov’s former employees.

This website has been put together by friends of Mr Magomedov primarily to tell his story. It also aims to explain his legal position to all interested parties, put on record his credentials as a responsible businessman and philanthropist, and correct any misrepresentations circulated by those hostile to him. It will be regularly updated with reliable third-party information, including court rulings and legal filings where appropriate.


Updates and insights

Latest news

Charitable work


Ziyavudin Magomedov is one of Russia’s largest charitable donors.

Over nearly two decades, he has given financial assistance worth more than $100 million to a wide range of good causes in the areas of culture and heritage, education and scientific research, sports and social affairs. In 2012, Mr Magomedov established the PERI Foundation, with a particular focus on education, heritage, and conservation projects.

Updates from

The Cases

Read more below about Mr Magomedov’s legal claim and the criminal proceedings brought against him in Russia. 

Following his arrest in 2018, Mr Magomedov was held for almost five years without a trial, before being convicted in December 2022 by a Moscow judge whose verdict uncritically parroted the prosecution’s case. 

As well as being deprived of his liberty, Mr Magomedov has faced an unbridled assault on his business interests – in both FESCO and his NCSP port business. 

In a wide-ranging claim filed at the English High Court, Mr Magomedov and his representatives accuse a number of parties – both western corporations and entities linked to the Russian state – of unlawfully conspiring against him and his business interests.

The story so far...


Click below for a timeline of the key events.

Ziyavudin Magomedov and his business partners acquire a controlling stake in FESCO Transportation Group, which includes the commercial port of Vladivostok via a leveraged buyout (LBO). This high-profile deal was advised upon and structured by Goldman Sachs, ING, Raiffeisenbank and other leading firms, and represented Russia’s biggest LBO at the time.

Transneft President Nikolai Tokarev meets Vladimir Putin. The pair are reputedly old friends, having previously worked together in the KGB.

The very next day, Ziyavudin Magomedov and his brother Magomed are arrested in Russia on racketeering and embezzlement charges.

Without Mr Magomedov’s knowledge or approval, two of his trusted associates are allegedly induced by Tokarev to sell the Summa Group’s stake in NCSP for just $750 million. In legal filings, it is claimed that Tokarev or others at Transneft told them that he would speak to President Putin to halt the prosecution if they agreed to a sale at that price.

The purported deal for NCSP (which is not recognised by Mr Magomedov) completes. The $750 million is transferred, but the bank account holding it is immediately frozen. Mr Magomedov will remain incarcerated. The $750 million is later formally confiscated in a series of court hearings where no witness evidence was heard.

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