Roman Abramovich’s British property empire is worth more than £200million and includes a 15-bedroom London mansion as pressure grows to freeze his UK assets.
The Russian billionaire, 54, reportedly boasts a British property empire that includes a 15-bedroom mansion in Kensington Palace Gardens that is believed to be now worth £125 million.
A representative of the 44-year-old anti-corruption campaigner, who is detained in Russia, reportedly accused him of being associated with the Kremlin.
The Russian billionaire, 54, reportedly boasts a British property empire that includes a 15-bedroom mansion in Kensington Palace Gardens (pictured) that is believed to be now worth £125 million
The Government has refused to speculate on future sanctions but Ministers do have the power to impose travel bans and freeze the financial assets of individuals involved in human rights abuses.
Last year the Foreign Office sanctioned six Russians who were said to be complicit in the attempted murder of Navalny and his allies have since released a further list of eight people they deem to be in close contact with the Kremlin.
Abramovich and Usmanov have always denied these claims and a spokesperson for the Chelsea owner insisted there is ‘no foundation’ for them. Usmanov, a former Arsenal shareholder, successfully sued Navalny for libel back in 2017.
Several properties owned by Abramovich, that were not previously publicly known to have belonged to him, have been uncovered in an investigation by The Times.
The portfolio includes a flat in Cheyne Terrace, Chelsea, which was purchased for £8.75million in 2017 and includes a high-tech temperature-controlled wine cellar.
Abramovich (pictured) and Usmanov have always denied these claims and a spokesperson for the Chelsea owner insisted there is ‘no foundation’ for them
It is close to three other properties that overlook the Thames, bought for £25million, that he had once intended to knock together and turn into a £100million super-home.
However Abramovich, who made his money selling state assets following the fall of the Soviet Union, scrapped the plan and sold up after he relented to local uproar.
Abramovich became an Israeli citizen in 2018 after his British visa expired and reportedly owns most of the properties through a holding company called Fordstam
And land registry records show that since he lost his citizenship he transferred 11 properties to the business.
The empire also includes a £22million three-storey penthouse, bought in 2018, at the Chelsea Waterfront which was completed after his visa expired and the purchase was made in his name.
Meanwhile the Kensington mansion, which cost a staggering £90million, is part of what is known as ‘billionaire’s row’.
Abramovich, whose net worth is believed to be around $14billion (£10bn), bought Premier League football club Chelsea in 2003 and has pumped his fortune into Stamford Bridge (pictured)
The desirable postcode is also home to steel magnate Lakshmi Mitta and billionaire business magnate Wang Jianlin.
Director of policy and programmes at Transparency International UK Duncan Hames told The Times: ‘It is no secret Britain has offered those with links to Putin’s regime a place to invest their money and burnish their reputations.’
Mr Hames said a ‘permissive approach to attracting high-end investors’ also ‘poses a serious national security threat’ to Britain.
A spokesman for Mr Abramovich told the newspaper: ‘There is no foundation for [Mr Navalny’s] claims.’
The empire also includes a £22million three-storey penthouse at the Chelsea Waterfront (pictured) which was completed after his visa expired and was made in his name
It comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been told by MPs to sanction Abramovich and Everton backer Alisher Usmanov, both Russian oligarchs involved in English football, over human-rights abuses.
Both Abramovich and Usmanov were named by detained Kremlin critic Navalny last week as people who should be targeted by Western governments in a bid to curb human-rights abuses by Vladimir Putin’s Russian state.
They were described as ‘key enablers and beneficiaries of Russian kleptocracy, with significant ties and assets in the West’.
Abramovich, pictured alongside Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2016, says there is ‘no foundation’ for Navalny’s claims
Usmanov was awarded Russia’s Order of Merit for the Fatherland by Putin at a ceremony in the Moscow Kremlin back in 2018
Navalny, a prominent face of the opposition towards the controversial Russian President, was detained at a Moscow airport earlier this month after spending five months in Germany recovering from nerve agent poisoning that he blames on Moscow.
His detention has been condemned by Governments around the world, with the UK and United States urging Russia to release him.
He appeared via video link from his prison cell on Thursday to appeal the decision to hold him in custody, but it was rejected.
Labour former minister Dame Margaret Hodge and Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokeswoman Layla Moran backed the idea to impose sanctions on the likes of Abramovich and Usmanov on Wednesday and challenged the Government in the Commons to take action.
Abramovich, whose net worth is believed to be around $14billion (£10bn), bought Premier League football club Chelsea in 2003 and has pumped his fortune into Stamford Bridge.
Under his ownership, Chelsea have won numerous Premier League titles, the Champions League and become one of world football’s most valuable clubs.
Abramovich’s 162.5m yacht, named ‘Eclipse’, is one of the many stunning gems within his fortune.
Abramovich – whose net worth is around £10bn – owns a number of expensive properties across the globe, including a £30million penthouse overlooking London’s River Thames and a 162.5m yacht (pictured in September 2020), named ‘Eclipse’
It can accomodate 36 guests in 18 cabins and boasts a cinema, conference facilities, children’s playroom, beauty salon, dance floor, two swimming pools, sauna and even a missile defence system.
Speaking in the Commons, Dame Margaret said: ‘The best way in which we can show our support for Alexei Navalny is not by words but by actions, not by investigations but by convictions.
‘Navalny himself has said that he wants the international community to use sanctions against complicit Russian kleptocrats who live outside Russia. He has named Abramovich and Usmanov, both of whom have considerable wealth, property and links to English football clubs.
‘But on Facebook Navalny has said that the sanctions haven’t worked because “the West has refrained from sanctioning the people with the money”. Is that true?’
Foreign Office minister Wendy Morton, in her reply, said: ‘We continue to work and protect human rights and civil society in Russia.
‘We are considering all options for further action but, as I’ve previously said, it’d be inappropriate for me to speculate on any future listings.’
Ms Moran earlier said: ‘Chelsea Football Club have indeed been in the news this week a lot (after sacking manager Frank Lampard and replacing him with Thomas Tuchel), though largely not for this.
‘But Alexei Navalny’s team have released a list of names drawn up by Navalny just days before his return and arrest which included Chelsea FC’s owner Roman Abramovich and Everton FC’s Alisher Usmanov among those who they believe should be sanctioned.
The Government has refused to speculate on future sanctions after Labour former minister Dame Margaret Hodge (R) asked for them to be imposed
‘Both individuals who are described as key enablers with significant ties and assets in the West.
‘I ask, is the minister taking these allegations seriously and will she provide assurances that anyone no matter their wealth or position would be considered for Magnitsky sanctions?’
Ms Morton replied: ‘Try as she might to ask me to speculate on further listings, alas I’m not going to do that.’
Conservative Tom Tugendhat, chairman of the Commons Foreign Affairs Select Committee, also said the Russian people have had their country’s wealth ‘stolen off them’ by a ‘gangster elite’.
He said: ‘When will we see a proper list of the ill-gotten gains that President Putin has stolen off the Russian people over the last 20 years?
‘When will we see a breakdown of his hidden wealth through UK jurisdictions or in areas where the UK has influence so that the Russian people can know how much money has been stolen off them by this gangster elite?’
Ms Morton, answering an urgent question on sanctions, earlier told MPs: ‘The UK is appalled by the politically-motivated detention of Alexei Navalny on arbitrary charges.
‘As the Foreign Secretary made clear, Mr Navalny is the victim of a despicable crime and we call for his immediate and unconditional release.’
She added: ‘We keep further sanctions designations under constant review, however, it would not be appropriate to comment at this stage on possible future designations as this could undermine their impact.’