Aspen’s Peak House touched by economic crisis |

Aspen’s Peak House touched by economic crisis

Rick Carroll
Aspen CO, Colorado
Paul Conrad/The Aspen TimesThe Peak House, upper left, is the highest home on Red Mountain, on the outskirts of Aspen. Viktor Kozeny, also known as "The Pirate of Prague," once owned the home.

ASPEN, Colorado ” The economic crisis can even be felt in the 2001 sale of the Peak House, the highest residence on Aspen’s Red Mountain and fabled for its connection to Viktor Kozeny, also known as “The Pirate of Prague.”

Kozeny resides in the Bahamas and continues to fight his extradition to the United States, where he faces criminal charges for allegedly fleecing American investors out of $182 million in an Azerbaijan oil scam.

In October 2001 he was forced, under a court order, to sell his 2137 Red Mountain Road home, which he bought for $19.7 million in June 1997. At the time, the sale price of the 24,000-square-foot mansion was a record for a Colorado single-family home.

Monthly payments on the subsequent $22 million sale of the house have been deposited into an escrow account since the sale closed seven years ago.

The establishment of the escrow came under the directive of Denver U.S. Court Judge Lewis T. Babcock, who ruled that the funds would be reserved for the $1.1 million in real estate commission for the sale, $350,000 to settle mechanics liens on the property, and potential expenses connected to the charges against Kozeny.

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