A judge in Fiji will decide on Tuesday whether US officials may take the $325 million luxury superyacht Amadea, which has been barred from leaving the South Pacific island owing to its ties to Russia.
However, the issue of which oligarch truly owns the Amadea remains unanswered. Only one of the two applicants is in danger of being sanctioned. s Suleiman Kerimov the true owner? That is what the United States asserts.
Kerimov, a former Russian politician and economist, was sanctioned by the US in 2018 for alleged money laundering and has since received further penalties from Canada, Europe, and the United Kingdom following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Kerimov amassed a fortune through investing in Russian gold manufacturer Polyus, according to Forbes magazine. His net worth is estimated to be $14.5 billion. Is it true that the real owner is Eduard Khudainatov? That is what the defence attorneys argue.
Khudainatov is the former chairman and CEO of Rosneft, the Russian state-owned oil and gas firm. Importantly, unlike many billionaires and persons with strong links to Russian President Vladimir Putin who have been sanctioned since the war began, Khudainatov does not appear to be facing any sanctions right now.
The Amadea, like many other superyachts, has a tangled web of trusts and shell businesses that make identifying true ownership difficult. The superyacht is officially registered in the Cayman Islands and is owned by Millemarin Investments Ltd., which is also domiciled there.
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