French authorities they have seized the yacht Amore Vero of the Russian oligarch Igor Sechin when trying to leave the Mediterranean port of La Ciotat, as reported by Bruno Le Maire, Minister of the Economy of France. Sechin is the CEO of the Russian oil giant Rosneft, and is also one of the closest advisers to Russian President Vladimir Putin, with whom he is a personal friend. The Amore Vero is the second ship that France seizes after this Thursday it also seized a Russian cargo ship in Loiret, Brittany. Measurement has been taken following the decision of Western states to apply massive sanctions, including asset freezes, against Russia for invading neighboring Ukraine. German authorities have also confiscated a luxury yacht of almost 600 million dollars owned by Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov, Forbes reported. With 15,917 tons, it is the world’s largest motor yacht by gross tonnage and typically has a crew of 96, with room for 24 passengers in 12 suites. It has the largest swimming pool ever installed on a yacht, as well as two helipads, a sauna, a beauty salon and a gym.
France sanctions Russian millionaires
Apparently the yacht docked in the French port was trying to leave the port. According to Reuter, customs officials warned that the yacht was “taking measures to set sail urgently, without completing the repair work”, so they decided to confiscate it.
A yacht appartenant à un oligarque russe a été saisi.
Merci aux douaniers français que font respecter les sanctions de l’Union européenne à l’encontre des proches du pouvoir russe. pic.twitter.com/AZVzmlet2P – Bruno Le Maire (@BrunoLeMaire) March 3, 2022
plus France is preparing a list of properties of Russian oligarchs, including cars and yachts, which could be seized under European Union sanctions, CBS reports, further ensuring that at least four yachts owned by Russian business leaders have been moving to Montenegro and the Maldives since leaders around the world announced possible sanctions.
Heading to Montenegro and Maldives
Vagit Alekperov, president of Russia-based Lukoil, sails his million-dollar yacht to Montenegro, according to Marine Traffic. He is expected to arrive there in the next few days from Barcelona, Spain. At least three other yachts owned by other Russian billionaires are approaching the Maldives in the Indian Ocean. The island nation has been a hotspot for tourists from Russia over the years.
The assets of the persecuted Russian oligarchs
“The United States and governments around the world they are chasing Putin’s cronies and their families by identifying and freezing the assets they have in our respective jurisdictions: their yachts, luxury apartments, money and other ill-gotten gains,” the White House tweeted.
Today, the United States, in coordination with Allies and partners, is imposing additional economic costs on Russia and Belarus in response to President Putin’s brutal invasion of Ukraine.
https://t.co/xa8emH43tT—The White House (@WhiteHouse) March 2, 2022
The US government has reported that a multilateral transatlantic working group will identify the assets of the Russian companies and oligarchs to sanction
Some Russian yachts are still docked in Spain
The Spanish Government proposed to the members of the European Union the closure of seaports to Russian ships, a measure that would prevent their navigation but not their stay in Spanish ports, for the time being. Although some millionaires such as Vladimir Potanin have already begun to take their ships out of Spanish ports, there are still at least two in the port of Barcelona: ‘My Solaris by Roman Abramovich, which is being repaired in Port Vell in the Catalan capital, and the Aurora’ , owned by Andrey Molchanov.