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Evgeny specialises in commercial disputes, including IP, Internet disputes and complex claims regarding product/service quality issues that might seriously affect a business.
Selected precedent-setting disputes
- Acted for a Russian company in a litigation against Pareks Bank and Citadele Bank seeking to establish whether the Russian arbitrazh (commercial) court had jurisdiction over a dispute with these banks actually present in Russia. In a landmark resolution in the case, the Supreme Commercial Court of Russia introduced the concept of “piercing the corporate veil” into Russian practice.
- Acted for Pharm-Syntez CJSC in a litigation against the international pharmaceutical company Novartis AG to enable state registration of a medicine before expiry of a patent for a medication element. The Supreme Commercial Court ruled in the client’s favour, setting an important precedent for the medication market.
- Acted for the International Federation of Phonographic Industry (IFPI) on behalf of three music majors: Sony Music Russia, Universal Music Russia and Warner Music UK on suits against the VKontakte social network to defend their neighbouring rights to phonograms. The first instance court ordered VKontakte to use digital fingerprint technology to filter uploads of illegal content, which is unique in Russian practice. Amicable settlements followed.
Selected commercial disputes
- Represented Sportmaster in the appellate court seeking to reduce the amount recovered from the client as the tenant under a lease. After the lease was signed, the landlord’s title to the property was impugned. The first instance court ruled that the landlord and our client must compensate the claimant for lost revenues. The appellate cut this amount from RUB 300 m to 60 m.
- Successfully represented a leading player on the Russian operating lease market for freight wagons, in a dispute worth over RUB 270 m, over a series of cases for debt collection under the purchase agreement for rail wagons and enforcement over the wagons as pledged assets.
- Acted for a major international car company in disputes over damages at the International Commercial Arbitration Court seated at the Russian Federation Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Approximately RUB 41 m in liquidated damages was recovered for the client, an extremely rare case in Russian practice.
- Represented a major FMCG company at the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) of Russia in an unfair competition case over face cream packages proclaiming “deep lifting” and “anti-ageing” properties. We were able to convince the FAS that such properties were common practice, so the case against our client was terminated.
- Successfully acted for Bulgartabac-Holding at the FAS of Russia in a case over unfair competition relating to production by a Russian company of cigarettes that the client has been producing since the mid-20th century and that were very well known on the Soviet market.
- Represented Sukhoi and Severstal on the Mezhprombank creditors’ committee as part of the bank’s bankruptcy.
Complex disputes over product/service quality fraught with tangible business implications
- Advised a major food company over an emergency at the client’s factory in Russia, which could have affected the product quality putting consumer health at risk. The client’s factory might have been closed and all its operations in Russia terminated. We were able to prevent all this.
- Acted for a hygiene products manufacturer, protecting the client in a number of aspects with respect to substandard product quality: preventing termination of state contracts for supply of products, negotiating an out-of-court settlement agreement with the most eristic consumer, representing the client in administrative offence cases.
- Represented a major manufacturer of construction materials in two lawsuits over its products not meeting the fire safety standards. The cases were complicated in that the materials had been used in repairs to many shopping malls. We won one case and the other was settled amicably.
Selected track record in IP and advertising
- Successfully acted for the Russian FORBES magazine founder (Axel Springer Russia) in a dispute in which a bad-faith counterparty attempted a provocation as it placed an advertisement in FORBES, seeking to make FORBES’ actions look like an example of media corruption.
- Successfully represented clients in preparing for and attending three FAS Expert Council meetings, which delivered major / practice-shaping decisions on advertising cases:
1) Expert Council meeting on medication advertisements using the word “quickly”
We acted for Johnson & Johnson, Reckitt Benkiser and other pharmaceutical companies. Our team was selected to sum up the position of the entire pharma industry for the Expert Council. The voting resulted in six commercials out of nine featuring the word “quickly” being deemed lawful.
2) Expert Council meeting on Pedigree’s “Boys” commercial
We acted for Mars at an Expert Council meeting on a dog food advertisement the FAS said showed children in a dangerous situation. As a result, our client’s commercials, which it needed to use on TV, were found lawful.
3) Expert Council meeting on surrogate advertising of “Reduxin” and “Orsoten” prescription medications through advertising of BAS and a non-prescription drug
Acting for a major pharmaceutical company, we drew up applications to the FAS and developed a thorough legal position, winning the case for the client, as the Council held that the advertising was not permissible.
- Represented Food Union in a challenging court case over an ice cream brand popular in St Petersburg, Russia (Sakharnaya Trubochka (“sugar tube”)). Our client has been producing ice cream under this brand for over 50 years without registering the trade mark. The parties settled all their disputes through an amicable agreement.
- Acted for a major brewery in a litigation over use of intellectual products and claims for recovering RUB 2 bn in compensation from the client (one of the most significant sums in Russian court practice in cases of the kind). The dispute resulted in an amicable settlement. No compensation was paid by the client.
Candidate of Science (Law).
Advocate, admitted to the Moscow Chamber of Advocates in 2007.