Putin's associate ally Barclays 'moved millions'

A close friend of Vladimir Putin may have used the Barclays Bank in London to track down the money and lift sanctions.

Putin's associate ally Barclays 'moved millions'

Billionaire Arkady Rotenberg has known the Russian president since childhood.

Financial sanctions, or sanctions, imposed on Mr. Rotenberg in 2014 and by the United States and the European Union, mean that Western banks could face serious consequences for doing business with him.

Barclays says he has fulfilled all his legal and formal duties.

A leak of classified files - "suspicious activity reports" from banks - shows Mr. Rotenberg’s idea of ​​companies taking control of how confidential accounts are’ kept.

The documents, known as the FinCEN files, were viewed’ by the BBC's Panorama program.

Inner circle

Following the annexation of Crimea by Ukraine in March 2014, the United States imposed economic sanctions on Russia.

The Treasury Department named Mr. Rotenberg, 68, and his brother Boris, 63, "members of the Russian leadership's inner circle."

The pair grew up and trained at the same judo gym as Putin.

In recent years, Arkady Rotenberg’s companies have built roads, a gas pipeline and a power plant under a Russian state contract.

The U.S. Treasury said the brothers "supported Putin's pet projects" and "gave him billions of dollars in Gazprom and Sochi Winter Olympics contracts."

In 2018, the United States added Igor, son of Arkady Rotenberg, to its list of approved individuals.

The sanctions are intended’ to exclude nominees from the entire Western financial system.

Still, Rotenberg appears to have continued to transfer cash through the UK and the US.

Art and money laundering
In 2008, Barclays opened an account for a company called Advantage Alliance.

Leaked documents show that the company transferred 60 60 million between 2012 and 2016. Many transactions took place after Rotenberg’s approval.

In July this year, a U.S. Senate the investigation accused Rotenberg of using clandestine purchases of expensive art to evade sanctions - one of the companies involved in the scheme was the Advantage Alliance.

U.S. investigators have concluded that there is strong evidence that Rotenberg owns the Advantage Alliance RCD, and that the company used its Barclays account in London to buy millions of dollars’ worth of art for him.

"Confidentiality, anonymity, and lack of regulation create an environment to avoid money laundering and sanctions," a report said. Auction houses in the United States and the United Kingdom have "failed to ask basic questions" about buyers of the art.

Despite the restrictions, Arkady appears to have paid $7.5 million to acquire the Rene McGregor painting La Poitrine.

On June 17, 2014, a company affiliated with Arkady sent the cash from Moscow to the Alliance's Barclays account in London. The next day, Barclays sent the cash to a seller in New York.

Account closed
In April 2016, Barclays launched an internal investigation into several accounts suspected of being linked’ to Rotenberg.

Barclays did not comment on when Panorama was asked’ how many accounts Rotenberg had that he suspected.

A Barclay’s spokesman said: "We believe that we have complied with all our legal and formal obligations under US sanctions."

"Seeing that filing an SRR is not in itself proof of wrongdoing, we will only terminate a client's relationship after careful and objective investigation and analysis of the evidence, which could lead to a potential financial crisis with the risk of 'de-banking'." Balances crime suspicions. Consumer. "

Rotenberg declined to comment.

The Funkin files are a leak of classified documents that show how big banks have allowed dirty money around the world. They also show how the UK is often a weak link in the financial system and how London makes a fuss over Russian cash.

The files were obtained by BuzzFeed News and shared with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) and 400 journalists from around the’ world. Panorama has led research for the BBC.

FinCEN files: full coverage; Follow the reaction on Twitter using #FinCENfiles In the BBC News app, follow the panorama watch "Funk Files" tag on the BBC I Pillar (UK viewers only).


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