Another Russian oligarch’s yacht was seized Thursday as part of efforts to punish Russia over its war in Ukraine.
At the request of the United States, Fijian officials took a $300 million yacht belonging to Suleiman Kerimov, the Justice Department said. Officials say the yacht is in Lautoka, Fiji.
Kerimov’s yacht, the Cayman Island-flagged Amadea, reportedly has been in Fiji since last month, arriving from Mexico. Defense lawyers claimed the vessel belonged to another oligarch.
Kerimov had already been sanctioned by the U.S. in 2014 and 2018 for Russia’s activities in Syria and Ukraine. The European Union also sanctioned him.
In March, the U.S. government announced a comprehensive effort to identify and seize the assets of wealthy Russians who have supported the government of Russian President Vladmir Putin, as part of the response to Moscow’s February 24 invasion of Ukraine.
The initiative, led by the Justice Department, is called Task Force KleptoCapture.
U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said Thursday in a statement there is “no hiding place for the assets of criminals who enable the Russian regime.” He also said, “The Justice Department will be relentless in our efforts to hold accountable those who facilitate the death and destruction we are witnessing in Ukraine.”
In April, at the urging of the U.S., Spanish authorities seized a yacht belonging to Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg, the owner of the Russian conglomerate Renova Group.
Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a measure that would allow the U.S. government to sell forfeited Russian properties worth more than $2 million for the benefit of Ukraine. The measure’s next step is the Senate.
(Some information in this report comes from Reuters.)