The ongoing saga amongst Avianca Holdings' major shareholders continues, with Kingsland Holdings attempting to bring a preliminary injunction to prevent the Colombian airline conglomerate's tie-up with United Airlines' parent, United Continental Holdings.

In a statement issued Thursday, March 16, Kingsland says that during a hearing in New York on March 15, it requested a preliminary injunction be issued to suspend negotiations between Avianca and United. While a hearing has been set for March 28 to discuss the application, another request for an order of accelerated discovery was denied.

Kingsland, which is owned by the El Salvadorian Kriete family of TACA International Airlines fame, maintains that it is pursuing the best interests of the company and that German Efromovich, the owner of Avianca Holdings' largest shareholder Synergy Aerospace, is "negotiating a self-serving deal with United Airlines under which hundreds of millions of dollars from the US carrier will flow directly to Synergy Aerospace." Efromovich, for his part, says that the lawsuit is extortion and is based on the greed and ego of the Kriete family.

It is recalled that Kingsland filed a lawsuit on February 28, 2017, in a New York State Court challenging Synergy Aerospace's pursuit of a strategic alliance with United. Kingsland contends that Synergy Aerospace conducted negotiations in secret and has come up with a deal that benefits Efromovich personally, to the detriment of the other shareholders of Avianca.

Efromovich subsequently hit back, accusing the Kriete family of behaving like gangsters who are attempting to force him to give up his controlling stake in Avianca.

"Nobody can oblige somebody to sell," he is reported as saying in the Financial Times. "We are not in the Al Capone days."