An FBI agent mans his post as the U.S. law enforcement agency conducted a raid at Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska’s home in Washington, U.S., October 19, 2021. REUTERS/Kevin Fogarty
October 19, 2021
By Kevin Fogerty and Sarah N. Lynch
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -FBI agents on Tuesday raided a Washington mansion linked to Russian Oleg Deripaska, a metals billionaire with ties to the Kremlin and to Paul Manafort, former U.S. President Donald Trump’s one-time 2016 campaign chairman.
An FBI agent stood outside the house in one of Washington’s wealthiest neighborhoods, with yellow “CRIME SCENE DO NOT ENTER” tape across the front of the mansion, while members of the FBI’s Evidence Response Team carried boxes out of the property.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation confirmed the agency was conducting a court-authorized law enforcement activity at the home, which the Washington Post has previously reported was linked to the Russian oligarch.
The specific reason for sealing off and searching the mansion was not immediately clear, and the FBI spokesperson did not provide details. A representative for Deripaska said the homes belong to relatives of the oligarch.
Deripaska, 53, has been under U.S. sanctions since 2018. Washington imposed sanctions on him and other influential Russians because of their ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin after alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
Reuters could not immediately determine Deripaska’s whereabouts.
Deripaska once employed Paul Manafort, who served for a period as the chairman of Trump’s 2016 campaign and who was convicted in 2018 on tax evasion and bank fraud charges.
He owns part of Rusal via his stake in the giant aluminum producer’s parent company En+ Group. Washington previously dropped sanctions against both companies but kept them on Deripaska.
Rusal’s Moscow-listed shares extended losses after the report, falling 6%.
The representative for Deripaska, who declined to give their name because of company policy, confirmed the raid on the home in Washington as well as one in New York City, and said both belong to Deripaska’s family rather than the executive himself.
“The FBI is indeed currently conducting searches of houses belonging to Oleg Deripaska’s relatives. The searches are being carried out on the basis of two court warrants related to the U.S. sanctions. The houses in question are located in New York and Washington, DC and are not owned by Oleg Deripaska himself,” said the representative did not provide any further details.
Deripaska previously sued to have the U.S. sanctions lifted but his case was dismissed in June.
(Reporting by Susan Heavey, Sarah N. Lynch, Mark Hosenball, Kevin Fogarty Jonathan Landay; additional reporting by Anastasia Lyrchikova and Polina Devitt in Moscow; Writing by Arshad Mohammed and Susan Heavey; Editing by Jonathan Oatis, Mark Porter and Howard Goller)