Roman Abramovich gave millions to his kids before sanctions

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Roman Abramovich gave millions to his kids before sanctions

Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich secretly transferred hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of assets — including superyachts and one of the world’s biggest private jets — to his children just days before he was placed under international sanctions, an analyst for the FBI has found.

Court documents filed last week in the US government’s effort to seize the billionaire’s pricey private planes revealed the convoluted machinations he has used to shield his vast wealth, the Sunday Times of London revealed.

In an affidavit filed Monday to the Southern District of New York, FBI Special Agent Alan Fowler wrote that Abramovich, a longtime ally of Vladimir Putin, used a series of shell companies to purchase the two aircraft — a bespoke Gulfstream G650ERa worth about $60 million and a customized Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner valued at $350 million, one of the most expensive private jets in the world.

In February 2022 — just days before Putin’s February 24 invasion of Ukraine triggered punishing sanctions against the Russian president’s oligarch cronies — Abramovich made some or all of his seven children the beneficiaries of the Cyprus-based Europa Settlement Trust, the document alleges.

The Europa Trust controls the shell companies that, on paper, own Abramovich’s jets, several yachts, a helicopter, and other assets, Fowler found.

Roman Abramovich speaks with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a business meeting in Sochi, Russia on July 19, 2016.
Roman Abramovich speaks with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a business meeting in Sochi, Russia on July 19, 2016.
Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images
Chelsea soccer club owner Roman Abramovich attends the UEFA Women's Champions League final soccer match against FC Barcelona in Gothenburg, Sweden, May 16, 2021.
Abramovich had owned the Chelsea Football club in London before he was sanctioned by the UK government.
AP Photo/Martin Meissner, File
Roman Abramovich’s Gulfstream aircraft was worth approximately $60 million.
Roman Abramovich’s Gulfstream aircraft was worth approximately $60 million.
US Attorney for the Southern Dis/AFP via Getty Images
A Boeing aircraft, bearing tail number P4-BDL and manufacturer serial number 37306, belonging to Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich.
Abramovich’s Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner is reportedly valued at a whooping $350 million.
US Attorney for the Southern Dis/AFP via Getty Images
Roman Abramovich with his daughter Sofia Abramovich.
Roman Abramovich with his daughter Sofia Abramovich.
Mike Egerton/PA Images via Getty Images

Abramovich, who made his fortune through Russian energy firms in the early years of Putin’s “KGB capitalism,” and found fame as the flashy owner of London’s Chelsea Football Club, has four daughters and three sons between the ages of 8 and 30 — all of whom hold dual citizenship in Russia and either Britain or the US.

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