Russian billionaires $600m superyacht seized after EU unleashes brutal sanctions

Ukraine: Kherson resident reacts to Russian takeover

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The $600 million superyacht, measuring 512 feet and weighing 15, 917 tonnes, had been in Hamburg since last October waiting to be refitted. According to a Forbes report, the Dilbar is the largest motor yacht in the world by tonnage and was custom built by German shipbuilder Lürssen over a period of 52 months.

The firm has called it “one of the most complex and challenging yachts ever built, in terms of both dimensions and technology”.

The yacht was moored in the Blohm+Voss shipyard in Hamburg when the German government froze the asset.

It is typically staffed by 96 people and has room for 24 passengers in its 12 suites.

It also boasts the largest swimming pool ever installed on a yacht, a sauna, a gym, a beauty salon and two helipads.

Mr Usmanov made his first fortune producing plastic bags and now holds stakes in iron ore, telecoms, mining and media.

He has an impressive property portfolio, with his two UK estates in London and Surrey having a combined value of $280 million.

He sold his 30% stake in Arsenal football club in 2018, but still retained links to English football through his MegaFon and USM Holdings sponsorships of Everton.

The team said on Wednesday that the arrangement would be suspended.

Mr Usmanov released a statement on Tuesday to the International Fencing Federation after it was announced he would be stepping down as their president.

He expressed his frustrations at the sanctions, saying: “I believe that such a decision is unfair and the reasons employed to justify the sanctions are a set of false and defamatory allegations damaging my honour, dignity and business reputation.

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“I will use all legal means to protect my honour and reputation.”

Ship tracking data shows that at least five other Russian billionaire superyachts are anchored or cruising in the Maldives, according to the Guardian.

The small island country, located in the Indian Ocean, does not have an extradition treaty with the US.

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