MTN eyes Turkcell ruling date

MTN says it expects a US court to rule on Turkcell’s bribery lawsuit against the group in late 2012 or early 2013.

On 28 March 2012, Turkcell Iletisim AS and EAC (Turkcell) filed a legal action against MTN Group and MTN International (Mauritius) Limited (MTNI) in the United States district court in Washington, DC.

Turkcell alleges, principally, that MTN violated the US Alien Tort Statute by engaging in the bribery of an Iranian and a South African government official in connection with MTN’s participation in the Irancell consortium.

It also also alleges that MTN encouraged the South African government to take a favourable position toward Iran’s civil nuclear power development programme at a meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency in November 2005, and that MTN
enlisted South African government support for the provision of military equipment to Iran.

Turkcell seeks damages in the amount of $4.2 billion. On 2 July 2012, MTN moved to dismiss the case on the basis that it lacks legal merit.

On 30 July 2012, the Turkcell plaintiffs filed an opposition to the motion. MTN’s
replying brief is due on 15 August 2012, at which point the motion will be fully briefed.

“MTN expects that the court will decide the motion in late 2012 or early 2013,” it said in a statement on Wednesday (8 August).

On 1 February 2012, MTN’s board of directors appointed a special committee to investigate the allegations made by Turkcell. The committee is chaired by an independent jurist, Lord Leonard Hoffmann, and has been directed to conduct an investigation and
report its findings and recommendations to the board.

“The committee’s investigation is continuing. MTN is working closely with all the relevant authorities to manage US sanctions against Iran and Syria. MTN continues to retain international legal advisors to assist the Group in remaining compliant with all applicable sanctions,” MTN said.

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MTN eyes Turkcell ruling date