More than $17 billion (£13 billion) in global assets – including offshore bank accounts, yachts, private jets and luxury properties in London, Tuscany and the French Riviera – have been linked to 35 Russian oligarchs and officials who allegedly have close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Today, The Guardian, working in partnership with Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project and other international news organizations, unveiling preliminary research in an ongoing project to track the wealth of Russia’s most powerful operators.
The Russian Asset Tracker The project will begin by focusing on a list of 35 men and women named last year as alleged Putin enablers by Jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny. It will record assets outside Russia where the reporting partners saw evidence linking them to these individuals.
Navalny’s organization wrote to Western governments asking for sanctions to be imposed on the names on its list, and all but one of the names have since been considered. Blacklisted by the US, EU, UK or Canada.
The names include four of the richest oligarchs, as well as heads of state-controlled corporations, prominent broadcasters, heads of spy agencies, ministers, political advisors, and district governors. It was followed by lawmakers in the US Congress Seeking tougher penalties to the Russian elite and in the UK Parliament by the Liberal Democratic Party’s foreign affairs spokeswoman, Leila Moran.
Moran He told the House of CommonsPutin’s friends should be subject to the strongest possible sanctions now, because it is through them that Putin and his inner circle keep their fortunes. If we chase his comrades, we pursue him. In fact, we are in a unique position to do so, because they chose London. They live here: it is “Londongrad” for them.
The Russian Asset Tracker It identified UK property or parcels of land – a combined value of more than half a billion dollars – linked through corporations, trusts or relatives of four prominent figures on Navalny’s list: Roman AbramovichAnd Alisher Usmanov, Oleg Deripaska and Igor Shuvalov. The Guardian will report on these findings in the coming days.
The search so far has seen evidence, mostly from 2020 to date, of names linked to more than 145 assets made up of 35 mansions, 43 apartments and 27 other plots of real estate. Seven yachts, as well as 11 private planes and helicopters, worth a combined $2 billion, were identified as being tied to just six individuals.
Some of the assets in the tracker are in the public domain – including Belgrave Square Palace in Deripaska in central London, which was seized by squatters last weekas well as the luxury yachts Dilbar, Lena and Amore Vero, associated with oligarchs UsmanovAnd the Gennady Timchenko And the Igor Sechin respectively.
Other possessions have gone largely unnoticed, or have sometimes existed almost in complete secrecy. Last month, the US Treasury highlighted opaque property problems by saying:The sanctioned oligarchs and powerful Russian elites used family members to transfer assets and hide their vast wealth. “
Outside the UK, the Russian asset tracker discovered:
Twenty-six assets are apparently linked to Deripaska, a He is said to be Putin’s favorite industrialist. They include billions of dollars in stock, a hotel in the Austrian Alps, a luxury yacht, a 60-meter support vessel with a helipad, luxury properties in London, Paris, Washington DC and New York, and four villas in Sardinia.
Two private planes – a $65 million Gulfstream G650 and a Bombardier Global Express – are connected to Shuvalov, the former Russian first deputy prime minister and now head of the state development corporation. Shuvalov is also associated with three luxury properties with a total value of approximately $35 million located in Salzkammergut, Austria, Tuscany in Italy, and Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Real estate holding companies associated with the families of Nikolai Tokarev, the head of the state-controlled pipeline company, as well as the presidential press secretary, Dmitry Peskov. Tokarev Companies They seem to own luxury properties on the Croatian island of Lošinj, a well-known hotspot for wealthy Russians, while Peskov is attached to an expensive apartment in Paris.
Many of the lesser known assets are held by shell companies based in offshore secret jurisdictions and trusts, which makes them more difficult to trace. Others are owned by relatives or partners of those on Navalny’s list, raising questions about the source of the funds used to acquire those assets.
Examined using evidence ranging from publicly available sources, data from International Consortium of Investigative Journalists . Databases of External LeaksThe FinCEN . files Reports of suspicious banking transactions and human intelligence sources.
The tracker serves as a snapshot in time, and includes only assets where journalists have seen documentary evidence or other reliable information linking them to Navalny 35. Some properties widely associated with certain oligarchs have yet to be confirmed.
Abramovich, Tokarev, Peskov and Shuvalov did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
A Deripaska spokesperson said: “It is unclear how publishing this type of ‘asset inventory’ can serve the public interest. Unless, of course, by ‘public interest’ you mean to encourage squatters to occupy private property, as they did with a house in London is owned by Deripaska’s relatives.
“All property and assets owned by him were acquired by fair means. The constant media frenzy, unfortunate as it is, certainly does not give anyone the right to call Deripaska a kleptocrat. The witch hunt in Russia of which Deripaska became a victim is entirely motivated by political motives.”
A spokesman for Usmanov added: “Mr Usmanov’s capital was built entirely through successful, and at times risky investments, as well as through effective management of his assets, which is the core of the business. Therefore, to characterize the source of his funds as “opaque” is not It is inherently true and damages Mr Usmanov’s reputation as an entrepreneur and an honest philanthropist.”