Billionaire Beny Steinmetz to Pay $14 Million in Damages Over Scrapped Gas Deal

Steinmetz to compensate geologist Yossi Langotsky for pulling out of energy deal that would have earned them billions of dollars.

The billionaire investor Beny Steinmetz must pay geologist Yossi Langotsky 50 million shekels ($14.4 million) in damages for pulling out of an energy deal that would have earned them billions of dollars, a Tel Aviv District Court ruled Monday.

The court confirmed the award that had been fixed last year in arbitration to settle a dispute between Langotsky and Steinetz’s investment vehicle Scorpio.

Langotsky sought damages after Scorpio pulled out of a partnership that held the rights to a 5% in the Tamar natural gas field in 2010 before drilling got underway. Scorpio’s last-minute exit prevented Langotsky from finding another investor to replace Scorpio. Tamar has since proven to hold an estimated 223 billion cubic meters of gas.

A year later, retired judge Boaz Okun, who was appointed arbitrator in the dispute, concluded that Scorpio had violated an agreement between the two.

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