News & Reports Aug 12, 2014 | 3:17 PMby GM Jonathan Tisdall

Tromsø Olympiad organizers vs. Russian Chess Federation

The RCF is planning to sue the Olympiad organizers for USD 200,000 in legal expenses connected to the pre-tournament dispute about the eligibility of their women's team for the event. In the first case to reach Tromsø courthouse they failed in their appeal to freeze those funds.

Russian Chess Federation President Andrey Filatov has been ever present at the Olympiad, here together with Women's Team Captain Sergei Rublevsky and players Alexandra Kosteniuk, Valentina Gunina and Kateryna Lagno | photo: Georgios Souleidis, chess24 

The hearing began this morning at 9 a.m and was focused on the request to freeze USD 200,000, as the RCF feared the event's funds are such that there would be nothing to sue for after the Olympiad is over.

Brynjar Østgård, one of the lawyers representing the RCF, argued that the federation had incurred extra costs as a direct result of breach of regulations by the Tromsø organizing committee. This referred to the well-known dispute about deadlines for registration of teams, line-ups and also pointed to doubts raised by Tromsø's admission of finance problems before the Olympiad.

The organizers have questioned the amount and documentation of legal expenses, and argued that the disputed deadline was agreed by both FIDE and the organizers. Østgård commented to NRK:

I agree that the demand is high, but we don't know what it costs to hire lawyers at short notice in Moscow.

The decision fell this afternoon. In the ruling, the RCF's claims were dismissed, and the Russian Chess Federation was instructed to pay legal costs of NOK 123,500 (about 15,000 Euro).

The court decision, which is largely in Norwegian but also English, can be downloaded at the link below:

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