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  • ‘Mystery man’ who foreclosed $50.9m Billionaire's Row penthouse revealed- He's Nigerian billionaire Kola Aluko
  • I will post it here exactly as I saw it on New York
    Times




    Nigerian playboy Kolawole “Kola” Aluko is
    the owner of the 79th-floor penthouse at
    the One57 tower on “Billionaires’ Row” —
    it’s a swanky pad that could become the
    biggest residential foreclosure in New York
    history, The Post has learned.
    The 48-year-old energy tycoon — who is
    pals with Jay Z, Beyoncé and Naomi
    Campbell — hasn’t been paying his bills
    on the $50.9 million luxury condo, and a
    European bank is forcing a sale next
    month.
    The Luxembourg-based Banque Havilland, which
    issued a $35.3 million mortgage on the 6,240-
    square-foot spread at 157 E. 57th St., has listed
    as collateral Aluko’s 213-foot yacht, the Galactica
    Star, and is looking to collect what it’s owed plus
    interest, court documents show.
    On top of the unpaid mortgage that came due last
    fall, Aluko also has been racking up maintenance
    fees and taxes on the property. He has not been
    seen for some time, prompting speculation that
    he is hiding out on the Galactica Star.
    The boat — which Aluko rented to Jay Z and
    Beyoncé in 2015 for $900,000 a week — was last
    registered in Freeport, the Bahamas, on May 3,
    but is currently “out of range,” yacht trackers
    said.
    According to sources, Aluko did appear with the
    yacht at the ill-fated Ja Rule Fyre Festival music
    event in the Bahamas in late April. Prior to that,
    the Galactica Star left Cabo last year and was
    briefly berthed in Turkey, records show. Aluko is
    close pals with Leonardo DiCaprio, and partied
    with the Oscar winner at his birthday in New York
    in 2013. Reps for Aluko confirmed at the time that
    he had made a large donation to DiCaprio’s
    environmental charity.
    Lately, Aluko has been dodging Nigerian
    authorities, who in February tried to freeze his
    assets including the apartment as part of a
    money-laundering probe. Aluko, who claims
    Switzerland as his residence, was among those
    who allegedly obtained lucrative contracts from
    Nigeria’s former oil minister, who has also been
    accused in a $1.76 billion scheme to defraud the
    government of oil sale profits that both have
    denied.
    The alleged plot may have parked the money in
    assets around the world, including jets,
    automobiles and pricey real estate in London,
    Sweden, Dubai, New York and California. Aluko
    has been busy flipping many of the expensive
    properties he’s bought.
    In Montecito, Calif., Gwyneth Paltrow paid Aluko
    an undermarket $4.9 million for a 2.4-acre estate
    that was equipped with a massive pool. In 2012,
    Aluko paid $14.7 million for an 11,478-square-
    foot manse in Beverly Hills that was rented to
    Ariana Grande.
    The singer had to leave when Aluko sold it for
    just $13 million in 2016.
    More recently, a shell company controlled by
    Aluko has been trying to unload an apartment at
    1049 Fifth Ave., which it bought for $8.5 million
    in 2013. The apartment, whose two combined
    units boast four bedrooms and four bathrooms, a
    maid’s apartment and two storage units, has liens
    on it of more than $20,000, and it owes $61,000
    in taxes to the city as of July 1.
    Luxury skyscraper One57, built by real estate
    mogul Gary Barnett’s Extell Development, holds
    the sales record for a full-floor apartment, with
    one unit that sold for $100.5 million. But with
    lots of competition from new Billionaires’ Row
    towers, including 432 Park Ave., it has become
    harder to sell and rent mega-priced condos.

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