Italy seizes world’s largest superyachts owned by Russian Billionaire.
Italian officials seized a £530 million super yacht owned by Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko on Friday.
According to a statement from Italy’s financial police, the yacht, known as “SY A,” was in storage in the northeastern port of Trieste.
In reaction to Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine, the EU has sanctioned a number of Russian elites for their strong ties to the Kremlin. Mr Melnichenko was one of them.
Mr Melnichenko, who owns fertilizer firm EuroChem Group and coal company SUEK, was one of 36 businesspeople who met with Mr Putin and other authorities on February 24 to discuss the impact of EU and EU economic sanctions, according to the source.
“The fact that he was invited to this meeting shows that he is a member of Vladimir Putin’s closest circle and that he is supporting or implementing actions or policies that undermine or threaten Ukraine’s territorial integrity, sovereignty, and independence, as well as stability and security,” the EU Council decision stated.
“It also reveals that he is one of the most powerful businesspeople in economic areas that provide a significant amount of cash to the Russian government, which is responsible for the annexation of Crimea and the destabilization of Ukraine.”
According to Forbes, the billionaire is worth over £8.4 billion ($11 billion), making him Russia’s eighth richest man.
The German shipbuilder Nobiskrug built the 143m (469ft) long superyacht, which has an underwater observation pod and hybrid diesel-electric power.
European countries have responded rapidly to seize assets from Russian oligarchs and have already taken a number of the sailing vessels.
Italian authorities have taken Lena belonging to Gennady Timchenko, in the port of San Remo and the Lady M owned by Alexei Mordashov in nearby Imperia.