Oligarch sues over Ukraine sanctions

Sanctions imposed on Belarusian-Russian oligarch Dmitry Mazepin in the wake of the Ukraine war have been challenged in an Australian court.

On Tuesday, Mr Mazepin launched Federal Court proceedings against the minister for foreign affairs claiming the sanctions were "legally unreasonable or seriously irrational".

On April 7 this year, then foreign minister Marise Payne issued sanctions against 67 high profile businessmen and elites, including Mr Mazepin who was owner and CEO of Russian fertiliser company Uralchem.

According to the lawsuit, the Morrison government argued sanctions against Mr Mazepin were necessary because he engaged in activities of "economic or strategic importance to Russia" due to his role as CEO.

The 54-year-old, who was born in Minsk, Belarus, claims he stepped down as head of Uralchem on March 11 before the sanctions were issued.

He is the father of former Formula One driver Nikita Mazepin, dumped this year by Haas who also severed ties with sponsor Uralchem due to the Russian war on Ukraine.

"There was no evidence or other material to justify the making of the decision, where the (Minister for Foreign Affairs) based the decision on the existence of a particular fact and that fact did not exist," Mr Mazepin wrote in documents filed with the court.

Seeking to force current Minister for Foreign Affairs Penny Wong to remove the sanctions, Mr Mazepin says he was not given any opportunity to provide details about his connections to Uralchem before the sanctions were imposed.

According to Uralchem's website, the firm was established in 2007 and is now one of the biggest suppliers of fertiliser to Russian farmers.

Ms Wong is also being sued in the Federal Court by another Russian oligarch Alexander Abramov over the sanctions.

The sanctions against him as head of the country's largest steel producer were revoked but immediately reimposed by Ms Wong in September.

AAP has contacted Ms Wong's department for comment.