He was apparently stubborn, a thorn in the side of the authorities – and had big plans. But in mid-May everything ended in tragedy: because his villa was to be evicted, a doctor set fire to the building on the exclusive Zürichberg. While the fire brigade and police approached, the man straightened himself.
The drama was preceded by a long dispute over money and the cardiologist’s license to work. And: The doctor was planning an exclusive clinic for the ultra-rich on the shores of Lake Zurich.
Kazakh presidential daughter as an investor
After the fire in the villa in Zurich-Hottingen, the traces stretch as far as Kazakhstan. The Zurich doctor is said to have accumulated debts with a company owned by the daughter of the Kazakh ex-president Nursultan Nazarbayev (80). The youngest daughter of Kazakhstan’s most powerful man, who still holds the strings in his hand in his home country, went to boarding school in Switzerland and is now on the board of directors of a Schwyz mailbox company, as the news portal Züriost reported.
Nazarbayev’s daughter Aliya (41) wanted to invest in a clinic for the super-rich, which the late Zurich cardiologist was planning in Pfäffikon SZ in a prime location on Lake Zurich. 350 million francs should have been invested in the construction of 50 luxury suites, operating theaters and staff houses, reports the “Tages-Anzeiger”. There should even be an in-house hairdressing salon, including a restaurant for round-the-clock catering for patients.
Enforcement, auctioning and criminal charges
Expert opinions, preliminary studies and negotiations for the project had already progressed. But there was a dispute with the Irish lawyer who runs a mailbox company for Nazarbayeva in Switzerland. The doctor was operated, and last October the villa on Sonnenbergstrasse was auctioned for 5.87 million francs to settle part of his debts.
The harassed cardiologist filed a criminal complaint against his former partner. In addition, the doctor continued to practice and received patients despite his license being withdrawn, which is why the Zurich Health Directorate filed a criminal complaint. Two hours before he was forced to leave the exclusive villa on Zurichberg, the tragedy broke out on Monday morning, May 17th.
Brand am Zürichberg: That’s what the police say(01:20)
A crazy clinic project
Insiders speak of a “crazy” clinic project called “The Swiss Castle”, which had been doomed to failure since 2018 when the Kazakh donors withdrew. It also remains unclear how much of his client’s money the Nazarbayeva lawyer administers in Switzerland and how much money actually went into the clinic project for the “ultra-rich”.
Switzerland, however, is not new territory for the Nazarbayev clan. In 2004, around 100 million francs from the Central Asian Republic were blocked in Swiss accounts. According to US investigators, these were bribes from oil companies to the Kazakh ruler. In 2010, Aliya’s sister Dinara is said to have acquired a villa in the Geneva suburb of Anières for CHF 74.7 million. (kes)