Does Putin own $700m superyacht in Italy? A look inside the luxurious Scheherazade
'Every surface is marble or gold. There are countless swimming pools, a spa, a sauna, a theatre, ballrooms, a gym, and two helipads. It's like a mini-city,' reveals a worker who helped build the yacht
Scheherazade, one of the world's top 20 largest yachts, is moored off the west coast of Italy and is worth $700 million approximately. Alexei Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation posted a YouTube video on Monday, March 21, linking Russian President Vladimir Putin to the six-deck Scheherazade. The superyacht, named after a legendary Persian queen, has been moored in Marina di Carrara, Italy, since September 2020.
"Navalny's researchers say they were able to access a list of Scheherazade's crew members and that they discovered–using phone numbers and credit score data–that several are Russian nationals employed by Russia's Federal Protective Service, a government agency that provides security to high-ranking Russian officials and state assets. One Scheherazade crew member also previously worked on the 270-foot-long Graceful yacht, which has also been linked to Putin, according to the 15-minute Navalny video," reports Forbes.
Inside the Scheherazade:
Pictures obtained by The Sun showcase the luxury and opulence of the superyacht. A worker who helped build it told the portal, "Every surface is marble or gold. There are countless swimming pools, a spa, a sauna, a theatre, ballrooms, a gym, and two helipads. It's like a mini-city. There is even a hospital, which makes sense when you hear rumors of Putin being terminally ill. It is hard to swallow the fact that the most incredible ship in the world is owned by a man intent on bombing civilians in Ukraine. And it is an unimaginable amount of wealth when the average Russian's salary is £5,000 a year, and people there are struggling to eat."
EXCLUSIVE: THE sickening luxury enjoyed by Vladimir Putin on board his £500million superyacht is today revealed by The Sun. The dictator, whose forces are bombing women and children in Ukraine, spared no expense on the six-deck Scheherazade. pic.twitter.com/HW6ngjAAHC— Julia Atherley (@julia_atherley) March 22, 2022
The 459-foot-long Scheherazade boasts a spa, beauty salon, swimming pool, dance floor, gym, and two helipads. It is also equipped with a movie theater, a self-leveling pool table, a five-meter aquarium, and the biggest TV on a yacht, stretching 4.5m across an entire wall. The security system of the yacht is capable of shooting down drones and is studded with satellite domes. Built by German ship maker Lurssen in 2020, the bathrooms are adorned with gold toilet roll holders and taps. The interior of the yacht has been designed by Zuretti Yacht Design, according to Super Yacht Fan.
Almost all the crew members are Russian citizens, many employed by the Federal Protection Service (FSO), the agency responsible for Putin’s personal security. The captain is British. The yacht is valued at $700m.— Andrew Neil (@afneil) March 23, 2022
The former crew member further told The Sun, "All over the world yachts owned by oligarchs are being seized but the Scheherazade is sitting there in plain sight in a marina in Italy. It just doesn't seem right." Tom Tugendhat, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, told the British newspaper, "Putin's pampered nautical palace was launched with cash stolen off the Russian people and now floats off the Italian Riviera, showing us all the action we should take."
The New York Times reported that Italian law enforcement had opened an inquiry into the yacht and had examined some of the ship's certification documents. Captain Bennett-Pearce said he had 'no choice' but to hand over documents revealing the owner's identity to the Italian authorities. "I have no doubt in my mind whatsoever that this will clear the vessel of all negative rumors and speculations," he wrote in a message to a reporter of the American daily newspaper.
One thing really stands out when you look at the list. It almost entirely consists of Russians. Russian passports are not the only thing they have in common. They also work for the FSO, The Federal Protective Service of the Russian Federation. pic.twitter.com/H7FtCKle9Q— Maria Pevchikh (@pevchikh) March 21, 2022
To sum up, a dozen of Vladimir Putin’s personal guards and servants are constantly maintaining one of the world’s largest yachts docked in an Italian port. We think that this is a solid enough proof that Scheherazade belongs to Putin himself and must be immediately seized.— Maria Pevchikh (@pevchikh) March 21, 2022