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US wins case to seize Russian superyacht in Fiji, sails away almost immediately

Fiji Russia Superyacht
Posted at 12:49 PM, Jun 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-07 12:49:51-04

The United States has won a legal battle to seize a Russian-owned superyacht in Fiji and wasted no time in taking command of the vessel and sailing it away from the South Pacific nation.

It wasn’t immediately clear where the U.S. intended to take the $325 million Amadea, which the FBI has linked to the Russian oligarch Suleiman Kerimov.

An hour or two before the superyacht left Fiji, the nation’s Supreme Court lifted a stay that had blocked the U.S. from seizing the vessel.

Fiji’s Chief Justice Kamal Kumar said the superyacht was “costing the Fijian government dearly.”

Kumar said the yacht sailed into Fiji waters “without a permit” and was likely to “evade prosecution” from the U.S.

Amadea is about the length of a football field, contains a live lobster tank, hand-painted piano, a swimming pool and even a large helipad.

It became a target of a U.S. task force launched in March to seize the assets of Russian oligarchs to put pressure on Russia to end the war.