The authorities of Antigua and Barbuda are trying to sell the superyacht, which has been under sanctions for a year. According to them, they have already received about 20 applications for the purchase of the Alfa Nero yacht, Bloomberg reports, citing local authorities. The United States believes that the owner of the vessel is Russian billionaire Andrey Guryev.
Andrey Guryev, Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors of Phosagro, has been under personal international sanctions since February 2022, including those of the UK. Guryev himself denies owning the ship. According to his lawyer, he has been using yachts “from time to time” since 2014, writes Forbes. But according to Bloomberg, notes to the crew were found on board that included references to “Mr. and Mrs. Guryev.”
The cost of the yacht is estimated at 120 million dollars. Bloomberg writes that for more than a year the yacht has been abandoned in Falmouth harbor on the island of Antigua in the Caribbean. The island nation spends more than $100,000 a month on crew maintenance alone. From February 2022, the crew of 44 has been reduced to six. According to a local lawyer, 25 members have sued to recover more than $2 million in unpaid wages. In April, Antigua authorities hoisted the state flag on an Alfa Nero and placed two guards on it.
The country’s authorities asked the United States to lift sanctions from the yacht in order to sell it at auction. Antigua fears that the proceeds of any sale could be frozen as banks are subject to the law.
Prospects for lifting sanctions from the yacht are commented by the lawyer, managing partner of the Gladyshev & Partners Law Office Vladimir Gladyshev:
– As for the sanctions, no matter who does what, everything will be right. Because the sanctions regime has not been regulated and is formulated as vaguely as possible, in such a way as to create the maximum risk for people who do not comply with the sanctions. And not for the sanctioned people and organizations themselves, but for the people and organizations that are associated with them. If they want to sell this yacht, they will sell it, there is nothing in the sanctions legislation that forbade them to sell, then, if he wants, Mr. Guryev will sue, here the issue is complicated by the fact that, according to the British press, the ownership of the yacht is maximally camouflaged, it belongs to whom -something through a network of offshore special companies.
What is the best thing for them to do?
“If you don’t have a bilateral agreement on the protection of investments, but you don’t have one with this jurisdiction, you can’t sue the state. You can apply to organizations that are involved in this whole story.
– The maintenance of the yacht, should it be in the form in which it was left?
– They think so. I do not understand what will happen if they abandon it and flood it, but apparently they are afraid of something.
– Isn’t it written in the law?
– Of course not. All sanctions regulation laws are drawn up as vaguely and vaguely as possible in order to create the greatest number of risks for people who are under sanctions, and the greatest favor to the state that enforces these sanctions.
In March 2023, the authorities of Antigua and Barbuda announced the acceptance of applications for the purchase of a yacht. Since 2022, more than two dozen ships worth about $4 billion have been seized in ports around the world.