The New York TimesThe New York Times

Why Tracking Putin’s Wealth Is So Difficult

By Mike McIntire

06 Apr 2022 · 5 min read

Buried in a 421-page legal filing in an obscure court case is a single sentence, offered almost as an afterthought, about a meeting at a Geneva restaurant where two businessmen chatted about “a yacht which had been presented to Mr. Putin.”

The passing reference, cited in a 2010 judge’s decision in London on a financial dispute involving a shipping company, is the rare bit of public evidence directly linking President Vladimir Putin of Russia to any of the luxury boats, planes or villas associated with him over the years. It has taken on new significance as U.S. and European authorities pursue the hidden wealth of Putin and people close to him in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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