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April 15, 2010

ESDC says it has no specific allegation regarding Prokhorov, notes that Ratner remains obligated to construct arena

Atlantic Yards Report

I got a response yesterday from the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) to questions regarding charges by New Jersey Rep. Bill Pascrell that prospective Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov had violated sanctions in Zimbabwe.

I also asked whether the ESDC had ever officially approved Prokhorov's role and conducted any investigation into him.

"ESDC is unaware of any of the specific allegations, or facts, in this manner and therefore cannot respond to questions," responded spokeswoman Elizabeth Mitchell. "We also choose not to respond to hypothetical investigations and determinations."

"As part of the December 23, 2009 Master Closing, ESDC did recognize that the team might be sold to an entity controlled by Mr. Prohkorov – subject to review and approval by the NBA," she added. "We expect that Mr. Prohkorov will be approved by the NBA and that the team will be sold to Mr. Prohkorov in accordance with the terms of the sale agreement. Regardless of any such sale, the obligation to construct the arena will remain with Forest City Ratner (acting through their affiliates)."

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Posted by lumi at April 15, 2010 6:02 AM