The US Treasury announced sanctions today on 24 Russians including members of president Vladimir Putin’s closest circle: his son-in-law, the son of his childhood judo partner, and his former intelligence chief.
The hardest-hit figure is aluminum tycoon Oleg Deripaska, to whom former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort reportedly offered (paywall) to give “private briefings” on the campaign. Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny has alleged that Deripaska was a middleman for Manafort in transmitting information to the Kremlin. Deripaska’s companies face sanctions as well.
The administration didn’t specifically mention Russia’s alleged hack of the 2016 US presidential election in explaining the sanctions, instead decrying a range of the Kremlin’s operations, including its occupation of Crimea, violence in eastern Ukraine, support for Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, attacks on Western democracies, and “malicious cyber activities.”
“Russian oligarchs and elites who profit from this corrupt system will no longer be insulated from the consequences of their government’s destabilizing activities,” Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin said in a statement.
The list also targets Alexei Miller, CEO of state-owned gas giant Gazprom; Andrei Kostin, the chair of VTB, Russia’s second-biggest bank; and the deputy governor of Russia’s Central Bank, Andrei Torshin, who has claimed his ties to the National Rifle Association have provided him access to president Trump.
The Treasury’s statement includes scathing reasons for certain individuals’ inclusion on the list.
- The US government notes allegations against Deripaska including his links to organized crime, ordering a murder, money laundering, and committing bribery.
- The Treasury says Kirill Shamalov’s “fortunes drastically improved” after marrying Putin’s daughter, with Shamalov soon joining “the ranks of the billionaire elite around Putin.” Bloomberg reported that Shamalov and Putin’s daughter Katerina had split up earlier this year.
- Duma deputy Andrei Skoch is accused of “leading” an organized crime group.