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Nigerian oil tycoon and billionaire Kola Aluko‘s $50.9 million penthouse in the Billionaires’ Row building in New York has been foreclosed after failing to make mortgage payments.
The billionaire, who is wanted by the Nigerian government for charges of money laundering, acquired the 6,240-square-foot full floor penthouse in December 2014 under a shell company listed in public records as One57 Inc.
A Luxembourg based Bank Banque Havilland, from which the Aluko took a $35.3million mortgage, according to New York Post is forcing a sale and has listed Aluko’s 213-foot yacht the Galactica Star as collateral, after the billionaire failed to repay the mortgage which was due a year later.
It is suspected that Aluko is hiding out on the Galactica Star, which he rented to JAY-Z and Beyoncé in 2015 for $900,000 a week.
Besides the unpaid mortgage, Aluko also owes property taxes and maintenance fees.
The apartment is scheduled for auction on July 19, according to real estate data firm PropertyShark.
The businessman is also close friends with Leonardo DiCaprio and made a large donation to DiCaprio’s environmental charity as well as attended the actor’s birthday party in New York City in 2013.
The energy tycoon sold a 2.4-acre estate in Montecito, California, to Gwyneth Paltrow for an undermarket $4.9million dollars.
In 2012, he bought an 11,478-square-foot house in Bel Air for $24.5 million, then sold the property in 2016 for $21.5 million.
He also owns a home in Beverly Hills that was also purchased in 2012 for $14.7 million.
Aluko is also avoiding Nigerian authorities who tried to freeze his assets in February as part of a money-laundering probe.
Apartment 79 was sold to a Aluko in December 2014 for $50.9 million, making it the eighth most expensive unit in the building, according to New York City property records.
Less than a year later however, he took out a $35.5 million dollars mortgage from Banque Havilland in Luxembourg to help pay for the apartment.
When Aluko failed to pay the loan back a year later, the bank took possession of the 6,420-square-foot apartment, according to court documents.
Now the bank is planning to auction off the four-bedroom apartment on July 19 to regain the mortgage plus interest.
“It’s probably the most-expensive foreclosure we’ve ever seen in luxury development. I don’t know of a foreclosure that’s larger than that,” Donna Olshan, president of high-end Manhattan brokerage Olshan Realty Inc., told newsmen.
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