Tag Archives: Deripaska

U.S. lifts sanctions on Rusal, other firms linked to Russia's Deripaska

U.S. lifts sanctions on Rusal, other firms linked to Russia's DeripaskaEarlier this month, 11 of Trump’s fellow Republicans in the U.S. Senate joined Democrats in a failed effort to keep the sanctions on Rusal, its parent, En+ Group Plc, and power firm JSC EuroSibEnergo. Advocates for keeping the sanctions had argued that Deripaska, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, retained too much control over the companies to lift sanctions imposed in April to punish Russia for actions including its annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea, efforts to interfere in U.S. elections and support for Syria’s government in its civil war. Some lawmakers from both parties also said it was inappropriate to ease the sanctions while Special Counsel Robert Mueller investigates whether Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign colluded with Moscow.



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Model who alleged Russian meddling in US election tells Moscow court she will not publish Deripaska recordings

Model who alleged Russian meddling in US election tells Moscow court she will not publish Deripaska recordingsAnastasia Vashukevich, the model who recorded a former employer of Paul Manafort allegedly discussing US relations with a Russian deputy prime minister during the 2016 election, has promised in a Moscow court not to release any further recordings.  Ms Vashukevich previously claimed to have evidence of Russian interference in the US election from a fling with Oleg Deripaska, the metals magnate to whom Donald Trump's campaign manager Manafort reportedly promised private briefings, something Deripaska always denied. Video she uploaded to Instagram showed Mr Deripaska speaking on a yacht in 2016 with Sergei Prikhodko, a deputy prime minister and long-time aide to Vladimir Putin. In a separate audio recording, Mr Deripaska is heard discussing Russia's “bad relations with America”. The pair talked about the “issue with America,” Ms Vashukevich had claimed. After her Instagram posts were discovered in February 2018, Ms Vashukevich was arrested while leading a sex training seminar in Thailand, and Mr Deripaska successfully sued Ms Vashukevich for violating his right to privacy with her photographs and recordings. A Russian court ordered her to delete the posts and pay him £5,800 in emotional damages. She and her partner from the sex training received a suspended sentence for soliciting and conspiracy last week and deported to Belarus, their native country. On her way there, they were arrested in a Moscow airport on Thursday. They face prostitution charges carrying up to six years in prison. After being led by bailiffs into a glass defendant's cage on Saturday, Ms Vashukevich asked Mr Deripaska's forgiveness and promised no more revelations. Ms Vashukevich was deported by Thailand and arrested at Moscow airport Credit: Vasily Maximov/AFP “There won't be any more audio recordings about Oleg Deripaska,” she told journalists from a glass defendant's cage. “I won't compromise him anymore, so he can relax, really, I've had enough." She claimed that she was now subject to "fabricated" criminal cases in Thailand, Russia and Belarus. Ms Vashukevich declined to comment when asked by The Telegraph if the prostitution charges against her were related to claims of Russian election interference. The court delayed a hearing on her confinement until Tuesday after investigators said they didn't have enough evidence to make their arguments. Mr Deripaska has denied interference and said he never received an offer of private briefings. He is under US sanctions, but sanctions against some of his companies are set to be lifted this week despite controversy in congress. Mr Deripaska is seen speaking to Mr Prikhodko in footage posted by Ms Vashukevich Credit: Instagram The meeting on the yacht took place in August 2016 off the coast of Norway, according to an investigation by opposition activist Alexei Navalny. A private jet linked to Mr Deripaska had flown between New York and Moscow and then to Norway in the previous days, Mr Navalny found. Manafort, who has pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges and agreed to cooperate with Robert Mueller's investigation into election interference, told a Russian acquaintance he could offer private briefings to Mr Deripaska the month before, according to emails seen by The Atlantic and other publications. Russia ordered YouTube to take down Mr Navalny's video investigation, but it is still available and has more than 8 million views. While in jail in Thailand, Ms Vashukevich claimed to have more than 16 hours of audio recordings and photographs providing evidence of Russian interference in the US election. She promised to provide the evidence if the United States gave her asylum. Miss Vashukevich in detention in Thailand  Credit:  JORGE SILVA/REUTERS Ms Vashukevich told CNN she witnessed Mr Deripaska meeting three Americans in 2016 and 2017 and said “they had a plan for the election”. She said she had photographs of one of the Americans with Mr Deripaska, but refused to name any of the men. CNN also reported FBI agents had unsuccessfully tried to see her in Thailand.



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Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska accused of interfering in Montenegro's elections

Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska accused of interfering in Montenegro's electionsOleg Deripaska, the Russian oligarch, was yesterday accused by the United States of working with a former Kremlin intelligence officer to interfere in Montenegro’s 2016 elections. The US Treasury announced sanctions against Victor Alekseyevich Boyarkin, once a member of Russia’s GRU military intelligence agency but now working for Mr Deripaska, according to the department. The Treasury said that Mr Boyarkin “reported directly to Deripaska and has led business negotiations on Deripaska’s behalf”. It added: “Deripaska and Boyarkin were involved in providing Russian financial support to a Montenegrin political party ahead of Montenegro’s 2016 elections.” That election, it has been alleged, featured an assassination attempt on the country’s prime minister by the pro-Russian opposition to stop its accession to Nato. Russia has denied involvement, and it is not suggested Mr Deripaska or Mr Boyarkin were involved in the attempt. The plot, reported extensively by The Daily Telegraph last year, has become a focal point for Western fears about Russian election meddling and led to legal action being taken against leaders of the Montenegrin opposition and two Russian nationals. Mr Deripaska at the World Economic Forum Credit: Reuters Mr Deripaska is one of Russia’s best-known businessmen and was head of the aluminium companies EN+ and Rusal until earlier this year. He is a well-known figure in London where he floated EN+, raising more than £1 billion, and is believed to own several properties. He once had links at the top of British politics, infamously hosting Lord Mandelson and George Osborne on his yacht in 2008. The US action is likely to increase pressure on Theresa May, the Prime Minister, who has vowed to take action against Russian oligarchs in the UK in the wake of the Skripal poisoning. The Telegraph reported earlier this month that Mr Deripaska was on a list of Russians to be targeted by British intelligence in a campaign to disrupt Vladimir Putin. This newspaper has previously asked about links between Mr Deripaska’s company Rusal and the former GRU officer. A spokesman for the company said at the time that Mr Boyarkin was no longer a Rusal employee. The US Treasury sanctioned Mr Deripaska in April 2016, claiming he “acted or purported to act for” a senior official in the Russian government. It also took action against EN+. Russian President Vladimir Putin (L), Nizhny Novgorod region Governor Valeriy Shantsev (C) and billionaire Oleg Deripaska (R) examine a new Gazon Next vehicle Credit: Getty Images Europe Yesterday, the department announced that it would be dropping sanctions against three companies linked to Mr Deripaska: En+, Rusal and JSC EuroSibEnergo. Steven Mnuchin, the US Treasury secretary, said: “Treasury sanctioned these companies because of their ownership and control by sanctioned Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, not for the conduct of the companies themselves. These companies have committed to significantly diminish Deripaska’s ownership and sever his control. The companies will be subject to ongoing compliance and will face severe consequences if they fail to comply.” The action was taken following fierce lobbying in Washington DC led in part by Lord Barker of Battle, the former Tory climate change minister who is chairman of EN+. Mr Deripaska’s agreement with the US Treasury department includes cutting his direct and indirect share ownership below 50 per cent in each company and overhauling the boards of En+ and Rusal. The sanctions spooked the energy markets, with Rusal seeing its value plummet since being targeted. Congress could yet block the Treasury’s lifting of sanctions and has 30 days in which to call a vote. At the same time as lifting the sanctions on Mr Deripaska’s companies, the US Treasury imposed punishments on several new Russian figures. They included Russian military intelligence operatives over the US election meddling, and Mr Boyarkin, who will have any assets in US financial institutions frozen. Banks dealing in dollars or companies trading in the US will also not be allowed to work with Mr Boyarkin. The Treasury cited an executive order which takes action against those working on behalf of senior Russian government officials in justifying its move. Donald Trump joined Britain in expelling Russian diplomats over the Skripal incident but has repeatedly appeared reluctant to publicly criticise the Russian president, though his administration has pushed ahead with sanctions. The alleged coup plot during Montenegro’s elections in 2016 remains, in the eyes of Kremlin critics, one of the most shocking examples of Russian election meddling. Members of the pro-Russian Montenegrin opposition were accused of planning with factions close to the Kremlin an attack on the country’s parliament and trying to kill Milo Djukanovic, the prime minister. It was seen as a last ditch attempt to stop Montenegro joining Nato. The plot was foiled and its alleged leaders put on trial. Montenegro went on to join Nato. This newspaper approached representatives at En+, Rusal and JSC EuroSibEnergo for a comment from Mr Deripaska or Mr Boyarkin but did not receive a response.     



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