Ukraine: Customs blocked the yacht of a Russian oligarch in La Ciota

This is the second seizure by French customs since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. They have their hands on the yacht “Amore Vero” of Russian billionaire Igor Sechin, the leader of Rosneft, in La Ciotat. After several hours of investigation at the shipyard, the operation lasted overnight from Wednesday to Thursday, a press release issued by Burcy said.

According to the ministry, the ship was in the process of arranging for immediate departure, as has been done by several boats in the recent past.

“A yacht belonging to a Russian oligarch has been confiscated. Thank you to the French customs officials implementing EU sanctions against people close to the Russian authorities”, welcomed Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire on Thursday morning. He announced earlier this week the creation of a “task force” made up of tax officials, customs officials and officials from the Financial Intelligence Services (Trackfin) to track properties, villas, jets, yachts, etc., personalities. is close to. Kremlin in France.

It is common knowledge that Russian billionaires own mansions on the Cote d’Azur or in the posh resorts of the Alps such as Courchevel. But hunting is spread throughout the region. Thus, according to France Bleu, the Ling of the Dordogne would be interested in the owner of Thenec’s castle. Eugene Schvidler, who owns a London mansion, 113-meter Yachts and flies a private jet worth $45 million, bought the palace and its 35 hectares in 2001.

Last Saturday, thanks to the cooperation of American officials, an action had already been taken: customs officials intercepted a freighter flying the Russian flag, the “Baltic Leader”. The property of the bank Promsvyazbank (PSB), targeted by European and US sanctions, it is held at the pier in Boulogne-sur-Mer.

“Back to the Stone Age”

Burcy is content to freeze these boats for the time being, but is considering a legal way to go from freezing to confiscation. It aims to confiscate all assets of EU blacklisted individuals and entities, including more than 500 names (including some 25 of Vladimir Putin’s). Forfeiture refers to “loss of property”, underlined Bruno Le Maire. It therefore goes beyond freezing, which includes blocking the asset and its sale or any transaction for a limited period of time.

“Seizure is a criminal concept: in a state of law you cannot do it without trial, otherwise it is a return to the Stone Age,” warns a lawyer specializing in these matters. If any law was passed, it would be subject to the protection of right to property as provided in the Declaration of Rights of Man and Citizen.

The United Kingdom is facing the same problem. As Boris Johnson comes under criticism for a lack of rigor on the oligarchs on British soil, the government is exploring legal ways to seize the UK assets of nine oligarchs placed on the sanctions list, according to the ‘Financial Times’ .

giant yacht in hamburg

Germany, for its part, has got its hands on billionaire Alisher Usmanov’s giant yacht in Hamburg, “Forbes” reports. His name appears on the European list, where it can be read that he has been “named as one of Vladimir Putin’s favorite oligarchs” and that he is “one of Russia’s official businessmen to manage financial flows”. but whose position depends upon the will of the President”. The file also specifies that former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev benefited from personal use of plush residences controlled by Alisher Usmanov.

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