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Oleg Boyko, Finstar Financial Group Founder, Sues Google and Wins

In a Forbes interview after the case, Mr Boyko explained his actions: “I did this to dissuade future slanderers, I was not gunning for Google LLC – I do not believe that Google is accountable to me. However, I do think that this case may set a legal precedent.”

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Gagarinsky District Court in Moscow has satisfied a lawsuit brought by Oleg Boyko against Google LLC. Mr Boyko requested the American multinational technology giant’s search engine cease indexing links to a website whose content defamed his honor and dignity.

International entrepreneur Oleg Boyko established Finstar Financial Group in 1996, and on current standing, it has business operations in over 30 countries, encompassing fintech, online banking, financial services, and IT. The Group has over $2 billion of assets under management. Since its inception, Finstar has obtained Evrazholding and Baltic Trust Bank, among others.

In 2019 Oleg Boyko presented to the court publications about him on a certain website that were completely untrue. The comments posted inferred that the businessman’s actions had led to the financial crisis in 1997 in Asia. In essence, the site had tarnished his business reputation. In all, the court had admitted 11 points as defamatory.

Mr Boyko’s lawyer commented: “We assume that this information appeared on the site at the behest of people who previously worked in the structures created by Mr Boyko but were fired from there for one reason or another. The court satisfied our appeal and recognized this information as untrue.”

In October 2019, Vidzeme District Court in Latvia had ordered that information published on certain online resources was “untrustworthy”. In December that year, Gagarinsky District Court of Moscow agreed that the allegations about Oleg Boyko, and appearing in these media, were indeed unreliable. In June this year, the Russian Federal media watchdog Roskomnadzor admitted the information as illegal and violated citizens’ privacy rights. The authority blocked the offending materials.

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Afterwards, Mr Boyko approached Google with a request not to display links to the defamatory materials under their search engine results for the query “Oleg Boyko”. Google ignored the request. At this point, the businessman decided to take the company to court.

In a Forbes interview after the case, Mr Boyko explained his actions: “I did this to dissuade future slanderers, I was not gunning for Google LLC – I do not believe that Google is accountable to me. However, I do think that this case may set a legal precedent.”

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Andrew Ross is a features writer whose stories are centered on emerging economies and fast-growing companies. His articles often look at trade policies and practices, geopolitics, mining and commodities, as well as the exciting world of technology. He also covers industries that have piqued the interest of the stock market, such as cryptocurrency and cannabis. He is a certified gadget enthusiast.