Jun 2, 2022 - World

U.S. unveils new sanctions against Russian elites and asset managers

Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting

Russian President Vladimir Putin on June 2. Photo: Mikhail Metzel/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. Treasury Department unveiled a new spate of sanctions on Thursday targeting the network of individuals and entities that enable Kremlin elites to anonymously use their money abroad and make use of their luxury assets.

Why it matters: The move further builds on previous moves by the U.S. to sanction Russia's elites and seize their assets abroad.

The big picture: The new sanctions target Sergei Roldugin, Russian President Vladimir Putin's personal friend, who manages Putin's offshore wealth. Roldugin's wife was also sanctioned.

  • A number of prominent Russian officials were also targeted in the new sanctions, including Yury Slyusar, the president of the state-owned United Aircraft Corporation (UAC), which has supplied aircraft used by Russia's military in Ukraine.
  • The Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) also identified various yachts and aircraft in which sanctioned Russian elites maintain interests, "in order to further tighten and enforce existing sanctions."
  • As part of this, the press release identified and included photos of a number of yachts with links to Putin, as well as sanctioned individuals and entities that are involved in their management.
  • Imperial Yachts SARL, a yacht brokerage firm that charters and manages superyachts for Russian elites, was also among those targeted.
  • Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, was also among those targeted in a new round of sanctions by the State Department, per a White House fact sheet.

What they're saying: “Russia’s elites, up to and including President Putin, rely on complex support networks to hide, move, and maintain their wealth and luxury assets,” Brian Nelson, the undersecretary of the Treasury for terrorism and financial intelligence, said in the press release.

  • “Today’s action demonstrates that Treasury can and will go after those responsible for shielding and maintaining these ill-gotten interests. We will continue to enforce our sanctions and expose the corrupt systems by which President Putin and his elites enrich themselves.”
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