The United States has filed a civil forfeiture complaint against the 348-foot yacht, Amadea, owned by Russian oligarch Suleiman Kerimov. The complaint, filed in the Southern District of New York, alleges that the $300 million yacht was “improved and maintained” in violation of U.S. sanctions against Kerimov and those acting on his behalf.
According to the Department of Justice (DOJ), Kerimov arranged to purchase the superyacht in September 2021 through a series of transfers between shell companies to conceal his ownership. The DOJ claims that Kerimov extensively traveled on the yacht and planned extensive renovations, assuming all liability and responsibility for its upkeep.
The DOJ further alleges that individuals or entities acting on Kerimov’s behalf made U.S. dollar-denominated payments for the yacht’s upkeep, violating applicable sanctions. As a result, the Amadea is now docked in San Diego and under U.S. control, following cooperation between U.S. officials and Fiji law enforcement to seize the ship.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams emphasized that the burden is on the government to provide sufficient evidence in the case. However, he stated that the filing of the complaint demonstrates the United States’ commitment to enforcing sanctions and holding sanctioned individuals accountable for their actions.