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Wed Jun 22, 2022, 08:24 PM

Megayachts Running Low on Safe Harbors as Russia Sanctions Bite

(Bloomberg) -- When the $325 million Amadea superyacht thatís been linked to Russian billionaire Suleiman Kerimov sailed into Fiji in April, the captain may have figured he had found a safe haven.

he laid-back South Pacific island nation hadnít joined in a global push to impose sanctions on Russia and many of President Vladimir Putinís wealthy supporters, and had just a few weeks before abstained from a United Nations resolution supporting Ukraineís territorial integrity.

Yet a week after the Amadea arrived, Fiji authorities detained the luxurious yacht at the request of the US government, which argued that Kerimov -- who has been sanctioned for his ties to Putin -- was the true owner of the ship. The US eventually won a series of legal challenges and seized the vessel, sailing it to Honolulu last week.

The costly episode shows how Russian tycoons are running out of places to park their floating palaces, four months after their countryís invasion of Ukraine. The US and Europe are going after their superyachts, villas and other assets because of their ties to Putin. Already, more than a dozen boats worth more than $2.25 billion have been seized by the US, EU nations and willing allies -- such as Fiji.


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