(New York) US law enforcement on Thursday raided two properties of Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg, President Vladimir Putin’s sanctioned ally, NBC News reported.
Posted at 6:30 a.m.
Federal agents and local police were seen loading boxes as they left a luxury apartment on New York’s Park Avenue and a vacation home in the Hamptons, a popular destination near New York.
And both properties are owned by Russian oligarchs, according to NBC, citing US Treasury documents.
The outlet added that authorities are also searching for a property on Fisher Island in Miami believed to be linked to Vekselberg.
Mr Vekselberg heads the Renova Group, a Moscow-based conglomerate, one of the Russian oligarchs targeted by sanctions after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
His assets in the United States have been frozen and American companies are prohibited from doing business with him and his businesses.
He is also being investigated by the US Department of Justice for bank fraud, but no charges have been filed, according to NBC.
Spain had already in April confiscated, at the request of the United States, a luxury yacht worth 90 million euros, owned by Victor Vekselberg.
In March, the United States announced the formation of a cell dedicated to prosecuting the “corrupt Russian oligarchy” and anyone who violated the sanctions adopted by Washington against Moscow.
Since then, the Americans have imposed sanctions and embargoes on ships and planes worth more than $1 billion, as well as freezing hundreds of millions of dollars of Russian elite assets in American accounts, according to the White House.
President Joe Biden hopes to be able to liquidate these assets and use the money to offset the damage done to Ukraine.
In early August, Washington announced new economic sanctions against Russian companies and oligarchs close to President Vladimir Putin, including Andrei Gureyev, who owns the largest private property in London behind Buckingham Palace.
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