Russian-Israeli billionaire Roman Abramovich, owner of the historic Chelsea FC football club, became a Portuguese citizen under a law granting passports to those whose Jewish ancestors had been expelled in the 15th century.
Mr. Abramovich must have proved that he was the descendant of Jews whose families fled the Iberian Peninsula as a result of campaigns of anti-Semitic persecution in Portugal and Spain.
Reuters news agency said on Saturday that a spokesman for the billionaire confirmed the information from the Portuguese newspaper public That the oligarch acquired Portuguese nationality in April.
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The newspaper says that Abramovich’s claim has been investigated by genealogists, with authorities seeking proof of his interest in Sephardic culture.
article of public, which quotes the Mazal news portal of the Jewish community in Porto, says that Abramovich donated to a project to honor Portuguese Jews in the German city of Hamburg.
A Portuguese passport allows Abramovich to live and work anywhere in the European Union. It will also be easier for him to do business in the UK.
In 2018, Abramovich received an Israeli ID card under the Law of Return, which allows Jews to become citizens of Israel. He arrived by his private jet.
Due to a diplomatic dispute between London and Moscow, he was granted Israeli citizenship, being unable to extend his visa to the UK.
Abramovich immediately became the richest Israeli and is now also the richest Portuguese citizen. According to Forbes, is currently valued at $14.3 billion.
As a new citizen, Abramovich is exempt from taxes in Israel on income earned abroad for 10 years, and is not required to declare sources of such income during the same period.
When Abramovich’s British visa expired, new, more stringent rules were required to explain the source of his funding in order to obtain a new one.
There is no evidence that Abramovich did anything wrong, but Britain has paid more attention to Russian businessmen and diplomats in recent years.
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