Police seize villas and yachts including the Lady M from Russians

Italy seizes property and yachts of Russians


Italian police seize villas and yachts worth €143million from five Russians placed on sanctions lists. The operation is part of a coordinated western drive to force President Putin’s hand over Ukraine.

Italian police seize villas and yachts worth €143 million from five high-profile Russians placed on sanctions lists following Moscow’s attack on Ukraine.

The luxury properties were in some of Italy’s most prestigious retail estate locations – Sardinia, by Lake Como and in Tuscany. The two superyachts were at their moorings in northern ports.

Western drive to force Putin’s hand

The operations were part of a coordinated drive by Western states to penalise wealthy Russians and try to force President Vladimir Putin to withdraw his troops from Ukraine.

A list issued by the Prime Minister’s office showed the most valuable asset seized is a 65 metre yacht. Belonging to Russia’s richest man Alexey Mordashov, the “Lady M” yacht has a value of €65 million. It was impounded in the port of Imperia.

A second luxury vessel, the Lena, was in the nearby port of Sanremo when seized. It is worth €50million and was the property of Gennady Timchenko. Putin has described Timchenko previously as one of his closet associates.

Billionaire businessman Alisher Usmanov had a villa worth €17million seized on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia. Meanwhile Oleg Savchenko, a member of the Russian parliament, had his 17th century house near the Tuscan city of Lucca, worth some €3million confiscated.

Russian TV host, Vladimir Soloviev, reportedly had properties worth €8million removed from him. He reportedly complained on Russian TV when he found out he risked losing his Italain properties.

Sources said more assets are expected to be seized from Russias in the coming days.

Continuing sanctions

Italian media say Mordashov owned a villa worth some €66 million on Sardinia. Forbes magazine estimates Mordashov had an estimated net worth of $29.1 billion before sanctions hit.

Mirko Idili, a coordinator of the CISL union in Sardinia, has warned that the sanctions and a reduced presence of rich Russians this summer could negatively affect Sardinia’s economy. He said more than 1,000 jobs are at risk.

The Bank of Italy’s financial intelligence division instructed Italian banks to urgently let it know of all measures taken to freeze the assets of people and entities placed on the EU list.

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