Representatives of Spanish gambling operator Codere have lodged a Spanish Capital Markets Commission (CNMV) claim against Connecticut-based hedge fund investor Silver Point Capital following a two-year legal dispute.

Spain’s CNMV officials are due to carry out an investigation into whether Silver Point had purposely engineered its control of Codere shareholdings and management structures, obstructing the Martinez Sampedro board representation and executive management.

The Martinez Sampedro family has maintained that Silver Point should have been forced to submit a formal takeover offer for Codere once they had acquired a 30% shareholding in the company.

However, the investors have emphasised that no takeover offer was proposed on the basis that their investment was agreed on terms brokered during Codere’s bankruptcy restructure in 2016.

Leading the legal claim against Silver Point, José Antonio Martínez Sampedro former Codere President & CEO, has branded Codere US debt holders as ‘vulture funds’ that had manipulated Codere’s 2016 refinancing, with Silver Point further allowed to appoint advisor Norman Sorensen as uncontested Chairman.

Following an injunction submitted via the US Connecticut District court, the Martinez Sampedro family has acquired information against Silver Point which allegedly proves that the investors had influenced the decision to remove the family’s representation from the executive board of Codere.

Heading towards Codere’s ‘Critical AGM’, Martínez Sampedro representatives have expressed that the family is willing to negotiate its exit from the firm, but that US investors will have to meet a separation fee of circa €210 million ($239m).