U.S. Offers To Auction Off Russian Oligarch's Seized Yacht - Media

(MENAFN- UkrinForm) The U.S. government said it is spending more than $7 million a year to maintain a superyacht seized from a sanctioned Russian oligarch, and called on a judge to let it auction the vessel before an ownership dispute is resolved.

That's according to Reuters , Ukrinform reports.

Fiji authorities seized the 106-meter, $300 million Amadea yacht in May 2022. It was allegedly owned by Suleiman Kerimov, a multibillionaire sanctioned by the U.S. in 2014 and 2018 in response to Russia's operations in Syria and Ukraine.

However, efforts to auction the yacht are being challenged by former Rosneft chief Eduard Khudainatov, who claims ownership of the Amadea.

Read also: EU Council decides on immobilized Russian assets

In a court filing February 9 federal prosecutors in Manhattan told U.S. District Judge Dale Ho that the $600,000 average monthly maintenance bill for the Amadea has been "excessive," justifying an auction. Talks to have Khudainatov pay for the yacht's upkeep have broken down, they added.

The seizure came as Washington ramped up sanctions enforcement against people close to Russian President Vladimir Putin to pressure Moscow to halt its war against Ukraine.

Read also: U.S. in talks with partners on Russia's frozen assets - State Dept

If the U.S. government succeeded in auctioning the yacht, it would likely eventually transfer sale proceeds to Ukraine.

Photo: mvariety


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