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Superyacht PHI Seized in London After Alleged Ties With Russian Businessman

A superyacht worth almost $50 million has been seized in London, UK, as authorities are suspecting the vessel belongs to a Russian businessman. The catch? He’s not even on the sanctions list.
Superyacht PHI 6 photos
Superyacht PHISuperyacht PHISuperyacht PHISuperyacht PHISuperyacht PHI
Ever since Russia’s attack on Ukraine, Russian oligarchs have also had to suffer directly. Their investments crashed, and governments all over the world (but most specifically in the U.S., UK and EU) have been working tirelessly to find the possessions of Russian billionaires and deprive them of those assets.

Now a superyacht called PHI has been seized yesterday by the UK’s anti-kleptocracy unit in the Canary Warf, East London, just hours before it was due to leave.

The investigators from the National Crime Agency have reasons to believe the boat belongs to a Russian businessman named Sergei Georgievich Naumenko. The superyacht was in London for an awards ceremony and is reportedly registered to a company from the Caribbean islands of St Kitts and Nevis, The Daily Mail reports. The vessel also carried Maltese flags to “deliberately hide its origins.”

The PHI is the first superyacht that has been detained in the UK since the sanctions started. The superyacht was first identified as potentially Russian-owned on March 13, although there’s still a mystery as to why it has been detained since Mr. Naumenko does not even feature on the list of sanctions.

The captain of the vessel, Guy Booth, from Worthing, West Sussex, denied any ties with Russians on his Facebook account and said the owner is “an experienced yachtsman.

PHI, which is reportedly worth almost $50 million, is a 192-foot (58.5 meters) yacht below 500 gross tonnes, which makes it the longest vessel in this category. The superyacht’s most interesting onboard features are its 300-bottle infinity wine cellar and an innovative, sustainable pool which uses much less fresh water than usual pools and doesn’t need a separate dump tank.

 
 
 
 
 

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