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Politico: Putin's Ex-Wife Urgently Sells Villas And Mansions in Europe

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Politico: Putin's Ex-Wife Urgently Sells Villas And Mansions in Europe

First of all, we are talking about an elite apartment in a Spanish resort town.

Fearing international sanctions after the start of a full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, Lyudmila Ocheretnaya, the ex-wife of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, began selling luxury real estate in the West. Journalists from the American news publisher Politico conducted an investigation and found this out.

Officially, Putin divorced his wife Lyudmila in 2013. A couple of years later, she married an athlete (Ironman triathlon amateur) and businessman Arthur Ocheretny.

“The couple is not on the European Union’s sanctions list, but that could quickly change; after all, London has already put Ocheretnaya and her adult children [from her marriage to Putin - Ed.] under sanctions. If Brussels followed suit, it could put the apartment and the rest of their European portfolio suddenly out of reach,” the journalists write.

First of all, they are talking about a luxury apartment located a 20-minute walk from the beach in Marbella, a resort town in Spain. At the time of purchase in 2014, it cost approximately 1.1 million euros. And since then, real estate prices have only risen.

According to journalists, Putin and Ocheretnaya have a lot of common property left.

"The marriage may have ended, but aspects of the relationship — in particular, its financial component — continued," the investigators say.

True, Ocheretny acquired the property. The apartment in Marbella is one of two in the city that he bought shortly before his marriage to Lyudmila. Ocheretny bought the first one in 2011 for about 800 thousand euros, and the second one in 2014 for more than 1 million euros. Registration documents show that the apartments are still his property.

“In recent decades, the area has become a magnet for Russian money. Some 3,000 Russians officially live in Marbella, the real number is much higher,” a local realtor told reporters.

But that is not all. In 2015, around the same time Ocheretny married Lyudmila, he purchased a luxury apartment in Davos, Switzerland. The advertised price at the time of the purchase was about 3 million euros. Moreover, Ocheretny was able to buy an apartment in Switzerland, despite the fact that Swiss laws restrict foreigners from buying houses except under a narrow set of circumstances.

In addition, Ocheretny bought an Art Deco villa, dubbed Villa Souzanna, located about 6 kilometers from the resort town of Biarritz in France.

“Villa Souzanna is not the only property in the town linked to the Russian president. In 2012, Kirill Shamalov, the then-husband of Katerina Tikhonova — Putin and Ocheretnaya’s youngest daughter — bought a 3.5 million euro house overlooking the sea,” the investigators note.

Last year, the UK authorities expanded the sanctions list against the entourage of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin. Then it included the former gymnast Alina Kabaeva, whom the media calls Putin's mistress, as well as his ex-wife Lyudmila (now she bears the surname Ocheretnaya).

In total, a dozen people have been added to the sanctions list, including relatives of dictator Putin or people whom the British authorities consider to be part of his “inner circle”.

The US later imposed sanctions on musician Sergei Roldugin, who is described in the media as Putin's closest friend and godfather to one of his daughters. His wife, opera singer Elena Mirtova, also fell under US sanctions.

Roldugin is now on the US, EU, UK, Australian and New Zealand sanctions lists.

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