August 26, 2018 / 4:48 AM / a month ago

Venezuela's PDVSA files appeal against Crystallex court ruling

CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela’s state oil firm Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA) PDVSA.UL said on Saturday it filed an appeal requesting that a Delaware court vacate a decision on Aug. 23 granting Canadian miner Crystallex the right to seize its U.S. assets.

FILE PHOTO: The corporate logo of the state oil company PDVSA is seen at a gas station in Caracas, Venezuela November 16, 2017. REUTERS/Marco Bello

In a statement on Twitter, PDVSA said it had filed a petition on Friday to the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to direct the Delaware District Court to acknowledge it had been “divested of jurisdiction with respect to PDVSA and its property.”

U.S. District Judge Leonard Stark in Delaware on Thursday had granted a so-called writ of attachment to Crystallex for shares of PDVSA’s U.S. subsidiary PDV Holdings, owner of U.S. oil refiner Citgo.

Crystallex has been seeking payment on a $1.4 billion award to compensate it for the 2008 nationalization of its gold mining operations by the now cash-strapped Venezuelan government.

The amount is comprised of about $1.2 billion plus $200 million of interest awarded by a World Bank arbitration tribunal in 2016.

The judge ruled on Aug. 9 that the Citgo Holding assets were subject to attachment.

Reuters could not immediately reach Crystallex for comment.

Reporting by Angus Berwick; Editing by Christian Schmollinger

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