GPMI Lines Up Financing for Suits Against Former Owner Lukoil

JERICHO, N.Y. -- Getty Realty Corp. has offered to pay $6.7 million in legal costs so that bankrupt Getty Petroleum Marketing Inc. (GPMI) can continue to litigate in its lawsuit against former owner Lukoil North America LLC.

According to First Enercast Financial, Getty Realty is one of GPMI's creditors and stands to gain financially if GPMI is successful in its lawsuit against the division of the Russian oil company.

GPMI's lawsuit states that Lukoil "stripped" value from its company and improperly claimed a tax refund of $6 million. GPMI's Chapter 11 papers claim that damages could be valued at as much as $200 million, the website reported.

Getty Realty is already owed an estimated $150 million in unpaid rent and lease damages. A judgement against Lukoil could be the only way Getty Realty recoups some of the money it lost, according to the report.

Getty Realty must get special permission to provide the $6.7 million in funding, however. Its offer is considered unusual and a bankruptcy judge must sign off on the agreement. A hearing is set for Oct. 22 in New York City to consider Getty Realty's request.

GPMI formerly had a master lease with Getty Realty, whereby it leased 799 properties, many of which are located in the Northeast. However, GPMI declared bankruptcy in December. Earlier this year, Getty Realty successfully eradicated its master lease.

As CSNews reported on Aug. 27, GPMI's liquidation plan was approved by U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge Shelley C. Chapman.

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