The superyachts (worth £680m) seized from oligarchs as sanctions hit Russians

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Superyacht Valerie, linked to chief of Russian state aerospace and defence conglomerate Rostec Sergei Chemezov, is seen at Barcelona Port in Barcelona city, Spain, March 9, 2022. REUTERS/Albert Gea
The superyacht Valerie, linked to Russian oligarch Sergei Chemezov, was seized at Barcelona Port in Spain this week. (Reuters)

As the Russian invasion in Ukraine continues, so too does the wave of economic sanctions against the nation’s oligarchs with links to president Vladimir Putin.

On Tuesday, the UK announced sanctions against a further 350 Russian individuals and entities, taking the total to more than 1,000.

And the EU imposed its own sanctions on 15 new individuals, including Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, who was already on the UK list.

One of the most prized assets of oligarchs are their superyachts - and these are now being seized on a regular basis.

The latest vessel to be seized through sanctions belonged to oligarch Sergei Chemezov, a close ally of Putin.

Here are the luxury vessels that have been take off the hands of Russian oligarchs since their country's invasion of Ukraine began almost three weeks ago.

Sergei Chemezov - Valerie superyacht - £115m

Superyacht Valerie, linked to chief of Russian state aerospace and defence conglomerate Rostec Sergei Chemezov, is seen at Barcelona Port in Barcelona city, Spain, March 9, 2022. REUTERS/Albert Gea
The superyacht Valerie, belonging to Rostec chief Sergei Chemezov, was seized in Barcelona, Spain. (Reuters)
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Head of Rostec state conglomerate Sergei Chemezov attend an opening of the MAKS 2021 air show in Zhukovsky, outside Moscow, Russia, July 20, 2021.  Sputnik/Alexei Nikolskyi/Kremlin via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY.
Russian president Vladimir Putin and head of Rostec state conglomerate Sergei Chemezov in July last year. (Reuters)

A superyacht belonging to Sergei Chemezov was seized by Spanish authorities in Barcelona on Monday.

The boat, named Valerie, is estimated to be worth about £115m.

Chemezov is a former KGB officer with strong links to Russian president Vladimir Putin.

He is the chief executive of the Russian state-owned conglomerate Rostec, which comprises 700 businesses across the defence and civil sectors.

Chemezov was appointed to the role by Putin - the pair became friends when stationed in the old East Germany in the 1980s.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine. (PA)
The Russian invasion of Ukraine. (PA)

The Valerie is 85m long and sails under the flag of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. The vessel is registered to Chemezov's stepdaughter, Anastasia Ignatova, through a British Virgin Islands company, according to a 2021 article published in the Pandora Papers information leak.

Chemezov was sanctioned by the EU and the US in 2014 and the UK in 2020 over Russia's annexation of Crimea and was named in sanctions lists this month by the US and Australia.

Andrey Melnichenko - Sailing Yacht A - £450m

MUGLA, TURKIYE - (ARCHIVE): A file photo dated November 18, 2017, shows the
The Sailing Yacht A superyacht, owned by Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko, has been seized. (Getty Images)
Andrei Melnichenko, major shareholder of Siberian Coal Energy Company (SUEK) and Siberian Generating Company, attends an agreement signing ceremony with the Krasnoyarsk region's government, in Moscow, Russia December 12, 2017. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin
EU sanctions have been placed on Russian oligarch Andrei Melnichenko. (Reuters)

On Saturday, Italian police seized the superyacht Sailing Yacht A, owned by Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko, said to be close to Putin.

The 143m long yacht was seized at the northern port of Trieste.

Melnichenko owned major fertiliser producer EuroChem Group and coal company SUEK. The companies said in statements on Thursday that he had resigned as a member of the board in both companies and withdrawn as their beneficiary.

Watch: Drone footage shows superyacht under investigation for Putin links

A spokesperson for Melnichenko, Alex Andreev, said the billionaire industrialist has "no relation to the tragic events in Ukraine” and “no political affiliations".

He was placed on the EU sanctions list on 9 March. He had attended a meeting between Putin and other oligarchs in February just before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Alexei Mordashov - Lady M - £20m

An Italian Finance Police car is parked in front of the yacht
An Italian Finance Police car is parked in front of the yacht Lady M, owned by Russian oligarch Alexei Mordashov, docked at Imperia's harbor, on March 5, 2022. (AFP via Getty Images)
Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) meets with chief executive officer of Severstal company Alexey Mordashov at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow January 19, 2015. REUTERS/Alexei Nikolsky/RIA Novosti/Kremlin (RUSSIA - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS) ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
Russian president Vladimir Putin with Severstal boss Alexei Mordashov in 2015. (Reuters)

The Lady M superyacht belonging to Russia’s richest man, Alexei Mordashov, was seized by Italian authorities earlier this month.

The 65m boat was seized at the northern Italian port of Imperia.

Mordashov is under EU sanctions following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The EU called him the “personal bank” of the senior officials who benefited from Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.

He is the chairman of Severstal, Russia’s largest steel and mining company.

According to Forbes, he has a net worth of about £22bn.

Gennady Timchenko - Lena - £6m

A picture taken on March 5, 2022 shows a view of the yacht
The yacht Lena, belonging to Gennady Timchenko, an oligarch close to Russian president Vladimir Putin, was seized in the Italian port of Sanremo. (AFP via Getty Images)
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Gennady Timchenko, founder and owner of a privately held investment vehicle Volga Group, visit a new concert hall of the Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg, Russia, June 3, 2017. Sputnik/Alexei Druzhinin/Kremlin via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY.
Russian president Vladimir Putin and oligarch Gennady Timchenko in 2017. (Reuters)

The 40m long superyacht Lena, belonging to billionaire Russian businessman Gennady Timchenko, was seized in the Italian port city of Sanremo earlier this month.

Timchenko was placed under EU sanctions and UK sanctions last month. He is a close friend of Putin, who gave him an oil export licence in 1991.

Igor Sechin - Amore Vero - £91m

TOPSHOT - A picture taken on March 3, 2022 in a shipyard of La Ciotat, near Marseille, southern France, shows a yacht, Amore Vero, owned by a company linked to Igor Sechin, chief executive of Russian energy giant Rosneft. - The French government on March 3 said it had seized in La Ciotat a superyacht owned by a company linked to Igor Sechin, chief executive of Russian energy giant Rosneft and close confidant of the Russian President, as part of the implementation of European Union sanctions against Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo by NICOLAS TUCAT / AFP) (Photo by NICOLAS TUCAT/AFP via Getty Images)
The Amore Vero superyacht in La Ciotat, near Marseille, southern France, where it was seized from oligarch Igor Sechin. (AFP via Getty Images)
Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Russia's oil giant Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow on May 12, 2020. (Photo by Alexey DRUZHININ / SPUTNIK / AFP) (Photo by ALEXEY DRUZHININ/SPUTNIK/AFP via Getty Images)
Russian president Vladimir Putin meets Russia's oil giant Rosneft chief Igor Sechin in 2020. (AFP via Getty Images)

Earlier this month, French authorities seized the 85m long Amore Vero superyacht belonging to Igor Sechin, a long-time confidante of Putin’s.

Nicknamed “Darth Vader”, Sechin served as Russia’s deputy prime minister from 2008 to 2012 and now runs the management board of oil company Rosneft.

The EU sanctioned Sechin last month and had his assets frozen. The UK has also imposed sanctions on Sechin.

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