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US News: Curse of Toutankhamon and Russian Oligarch: a villa seized by Italian justice

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  Malédiction de Toutânkhamon et oligarque russe : une villa saisie par la justice italienne © Studioraffi

It is a story of oligarch close to Vladimir Putin , Italian villa and angry pharaoh. As part of the Western sanctions established since the start of the war in Ukraine to put pressure on Russia, the villa of a Russian businessman was seized on Monday, on the bay of Portofino. Villa Altachiara belongs to Eduard Khudainatov , ex-CEO of the Russian oil juginity Rosneft and the early support of President Putin. According to Forbes magazine, the fortune of Eduard Khudainatov is estimated at at least two billion dollars.

last May, the Italian government has already seized one of its property, the ship on the Scheherazade , valued at $ 700 million. According to a Forbes survey, the property of Eduard Khudainatov on this yacht is only a lure to hide the real utility: the chief of the Kremlin . Sanctioned by international authorities since early June, it is also the subject of prosecution in the United States. The American Ministry of Justice has discovered that it is also at the head of several holding companies based in Malta, Cyprus, Luxembourg and Russia and identified it as the false owner of another Luxury Yacht , the Amadea , which would actually belong to the long -standing oligarch Suleiman Kerimov .

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The Curse of Toutankhamon

What does the Pharaoh Unhappy in this story of Russian billionaires come? The villa frozen by Italian justice is home to a heavy past, which finds its roots between the United Kingdom, Italy and Egypt. According to the Times , the Altachiara now has "30 rooms [...] a swimming pool and a helicopter track". The house was built in 1874 for the Count of Carnarvon, a conservative British politician, appointed Secretary of State for the Colonies twice.

His son, the fifth Count of Carnavon, was entitled to the archaeologist Howard Carter, to the point of witnessing the discovery of the entrance to the tomb of the famous Pharaoh Toutankhamon , in November 1922. Five months later, suffering from pneumonia, he died from the infection of a mosquito bite. It was then the first of the 27 deaths that followed the discovery of the burial of Toutankhamon . Legend has it that the angry pharaoh has launched a curse, condemning to death all those who dared to disturb his rest.

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A villa of auspicious

according to the Times, many dramas hit the owners of the villa after these events. One of the count's nieces died, fell from a rocky promontory. The Countess Francesca Vacca Agust, the last Italian owner of the premises, was found dead at sea, in 2001. A suspicious death surrounded by shadows, between corruption scandals, small financial arrangements with friends and stormy love stories. All, swept away by a verdict: it was an accident, according to the police.

After tackling the Pharaoh's anger, the villa enters a dark chapter in contemporary history. Here it is added to the long list of goods belonging to oligarchs seized by European justice in an attempt to put pressure on Moscow and weaken the influence of Vladimir Putin.

targeted by a complaint for complicity in war crimes in Ukraine .
Total © Copyright 2022, L'Obs Two associations filed a complaint in Paris for complicity in war crimes, accusing the total French group of having continued to exploit An deposit in Russia and allowed to manufacture fuel used by Russian planes engaged in The conflict in Ukraine , AFP learned from the file on Friday 14 October.

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