Leaked Papers Link Putin Associates to Offshore Dealings
Leaked financial papers published by an international group of investigative journalists Sunday implicated Russian President Vladimir Putin’s close associates — including his alleged mistress — in amassing secret offshore assets.
Financial records show that Svetlana Krivonogikh became the owner of an apartment in Monaco in 2003 via an offshore company created weeks after she gave birth, according to The Washington Post. The luxury waterfront unit cost $4.1 million at the time of purchase, and its value is likely to have gone up since then.
Russian investigative outlet Proekt last year identified Krivonogikh as a former cleaner who has mysteriously amassed at least 7.7 billion rubles ($106 million) of Russia-based assets alone, and the mother of Putin’s alleged extramarital daughter, Luiza Rozova. Russian authorities banned Proekt this summer and placed several of its journalists on their list of “foreign agents.”
Rozova, 18, whose birth certificate does not identify her father other than by her patronymic Vladimirovna, has fueled speculation of her father’s identity without directly confirming or denying it on her social media. The Kremlin has said it is unaware of the Krivonogikh family.
The papers linking Krivonogikh to the Monaco property are part of a trove of 11.9 million documents that the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) project titled the “Pandora Papers.”
The ICIJ said that Russian nationals are “disproportionately represented” in the Pandora Papers, with 14% of the more than 27,000 scrutinized companies having Russian beneficiaries and 46 Russian oligarchs found to use offshore companies.
The Pandora Papers also named the family of Sergei Chemezov, one of Putin’s oldest friends, German Gref, the CEO of Russia’s state-controlled lender Sberbank, and Konstantin Ernst, the CEO of one of Russia’s most-watched state-run broadcasters Channel One, in alleged offshore dealings.
“The cache provides a particularly expansive view of how many of those most loyal to Putin have grown exorbitantly rich and stashed assets abroad,” The Washington Post reported.
(c) The Moscow Times