Photo: Pool / Pool (Getty Images)
When he’s not busy getting innocent people in Ukraine killed because he started an unnecessary war he’s now unlikely to ever win, Russian President Vladimir Putin likes to relax on a collection of superyachts, a collection that has apparently grown by two.
Dossier Centre investigators found the yachts that it believes are used by Putin and people in his inner circle, Yahoo reports. The first is the Victoria, a 233-foot-long superyacht that was built at Russia’s Sevmash military facility and is currently being repaired at a Turkish shipyard. The second is the 125-foot Orion that reportedly serves as an escort vehicle.
The Victoria took 14 years to build and cost more than $50 million, Yahoo reports. It has the capacity to hold up to 28 people, but that usually includes a crew of between 11 and 15. When investigating the yacht with a drone, the Dossier Centre spotted a large V displayed on board. While the Victoria is usually stationed in Sochi, it reportedly travels to Cape Idokopas where Putin has a palace, although it is said to turn off its automatic identification system before it reaches the cape.
Proving that Putin actually owns his yachts can be a difficult task, as it’s believed he uses legal trickery to make it all but impossible to find a direct link between his yachts and himself. By using shell companies owned by other shell companies, Russian oligarchs create all kinds of obstacles for investigators attempting to determine who owns what yacht. It also appears that Putin “borrows” yachts from fellow wealthy Russians.
Social media, however, can be an incredibly useful tool. The Victoria was recently spotted in an Instagram post from Natalia Belugina, a gymnast and choreographer who is known to be friends with Alina Kabaeva who is also a gymnast and said to be Putin’s mistress. A source also claimed that Kabaeva and her family regularly use the yacht.
In a statement, Dossier said, “Vladimir Putin was never photographed on the Victoria, so there is no direct documentary evidence that the yacht belongs to him. However, as with other Russian president’s yachts, there is plenty of indirect evidence: a specially selected crew, the ship’s route, passing close to the presidential palace, the nominal owner, and the unusual construction history.”
While the Victoria is impressively large, it still pales in comparison to the $700 million, 459-foot-long Scheherazade, which was seized by Italian authorities back in 2022.
Бухта, где Путин прячет яхты. Расследование «Досье»
Keyword: Investigators Claim Putin Is Linked To Two More Superyachts: Report