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Yegiazaryan v. Smagin (U.S. Sup. Ct.)

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 March 2024

Juan Pablo Gomez-Moreno*
Juan Pablo Gómez-Moreno is an expert consultant in a variety of international affairs, including international arbitration and foreign investment policy. He also teaches undergraduate and postgraduate courses on private and international law at several universities throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. He is based in Colombia.


Yegiazaryan v. Smagin represents a landmark case within the Supreme Court's (SCOTUS) jurisdiction, revolving around a contractual dispute between John Yegiazaryan and Alex Smagin. The legal intricacies unfolded when Smagin sought to enforce a multimillion-dollar arbitration award against Yegiazaryan in California under the New York Convention. The district court's asset freeze faced complications as Yegiazaryan, residing in California, received an unrelated arbitration award and attempted to evade the freeze. In response, Smagin invoked the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), alleging a coordinated effort to obstruct the collection of the arbitration judgment. The case stands as a pivotal legal milestone marked by complexities and jurisdictional challenges.

International Legal Documents
Copyright © The Author(s), 2024. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of The American Society of International Law

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1 Yegiazaryan v. Smagin, 599 U. S. ____, *14 (2023).

2 18 USC § 1961(1).

3 18 U.S.C. §1964(c).

4 RJR Nabisco, Inc. v. European Community, 579 U.S. 325, 346 (2016).

5 Armada (Singapore) PTE Ltd. v. Amcol Int'l Corp., 885 F.3d 1090, 1093–95 (7th Cir. 2018).

6 Tatung Co., Ltd. v. Shu Tze Hsu, 217 F. Supp. 3d 1138 (C.D. Cal. 2016).

7 Armada (Singapore) PTE Ltd. v. Amcol Int'l Corp., 885 F.3d 1090, 1093–95 (7th Cir. 2018).

8 Humphrey v. GlaxoSmithKline PLC, 905 F.3d 694, 701, 707 (3d Cir. 2018).

9 Smagin v. Yegiazaryan, 37 F.4th 562, 567 (9th Cir. 2022) at 568.

10 Id.

11 Church Joint Venture, L.P. v. Blasingame, 947 F.3d 925, 931 (6th Cir. 2020).

12 See Kruse by and through Kruse v. Repp, 543 F.Supp.3d 654 (S.D. Iowa 2021).

13 18 U.S.C. §1964(c).