Home Breaking News Russian super-yacht worth £38million seized in London in ‘warning to Putin’

Russian super-yacht worth £38million seized in London in ‘warning to Putin’

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UK officials boarded Phi – owned by a Russian businessman – in Canary Wharf, east London, on Tuesday and detained it under sanctions imposed after the invasion of Ukraine

The superyacht, called Phi, has been detained in Canary Wharf

A superyacht has been detained in London as part of sanctions against Russia, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has announced.

UK officials boarded Phi – owned by a Russian businessman – in Canary Wharf, east London on Tuesday.

The vessel is the first to be detained in the UK under sanctions imposed because of the war in Ukraine.

Phi – named after the mathematical concept – made her maiden voyage last year after being built in the Netherlands.

She is 58.5 metres long and features what is described as an “infinite wine cellar” and a freshwater swimming pool.

The vessel was in London for a superyacht awards ceremony and was due to depart at noon on Tuesday.

The vessel is the first to be detained in the UK under sanctions imposed because of the war in Ukraine

Mr Shapps said: “Today we’ve detained a £38 million superyacht and turned an icon of Russia’s power and wealth into a clear and stark warning to Putin and his cronies.

“Detaining the Phi proves, yet again, that we can and will take the strongest possible action against those seeking to benefit from connections to Putin’s regime.”

The Department for Transport (DfT) said it worked with the National Crime Agency and the Border Force Maritime Investigation Bureau to identify and detain the vessel.

The Department for Transport (DfT) has refused to name the owner of the vessel

It refused to reveal the name of her owner, stating that he is “a Russian businessman”.

The department described Phi’s ownership as “deliberately well hidden”.
She is registered to a company based in the Caribbean dual-island nation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, and carries a Maltese flag.

The DfT said it is “looking at a number of other vessels” and hopes its “strong stance sends an example to international partners”.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the detention of Phi posed a clear and stark warning to Putin and his cronies
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Image:

James Maloney/Lancs Live)

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It comes after Russian oligarch Alisher Usmanov claimed he managed to dodge UK sanctions by putting his UK properties and yacht out of the law’s reach.

A spokesman for the billionaire, who has had ties to Arsenal and Everton football clubs, said most of his UK assets were transferred into trusts before Boris Johnson imposed sanctions.

Ministers sanctioned Mr Usmanov earlier this month because of his “close links to the Kremlin” as they seek to punish Russian President Vladimir Putin for waging war.

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The Government said he owns Beechwood House in Highgate, north-west London, and estimated it is worth £48 million, as well as the 16th century Sutton Place estate in Surrey.

But a spokesman, quoted by the BBC and the Guardian, said most of his UK property and his yacht had already been “long ago transferred into irrevocable trusts”.

“From that point on, Mr Usmanov did not own them, nor was he able to manage them or deal with their sale, but could only use them on a rental basis. Mr Usmanov withdrew from the beneficiaries of the trusts, donating his beneficial rights to his family,” he added.

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/breaking-russian-super-yacht-worth-26582909