Exclusive: Putin’s ex-wife linked to multi-million-dollar property business

May 19, 2017
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By Svetlana Reiter | MOSCOWIn Moscow, Syrian minister says Russia promises aid. Read more ... »

MOSCOW The formerTwo charged with Nemtsov killing include former Chechen policeman. Read more ... » wifePrince’s wife got $6 million Toronto house in 2007 divorce: documents. Read more ... » of RussianNATO aims to feed fears by painting Russia as ‘treacherous enemy’ – Russian Defense Ministry. Read more ... » president VladimirG20 summit: Vladimir Putin gets cold shoulder from Stephen Harper. Read more ... » Putin'It’s called a koala, Tony': Twitter explodes after Abbott trades 'shirtfronting' Putin for cuddly joint pic. Read more ... » helped createDrones & satellites: Russia to create Arctic complex monitoring system by 2025. Read more ... » and now supportsDonald Trump supports Putin ‘bombing the hell out of ISIS’. Read more ... » a foundationState Department Won’t Release Clinton Foundation s for 27 Months. Read more ... » that owns a historic Moscow property generating millions of dollars fromRussia faces ban from athletics for widespread doping offences. Read more ... » tenantsMidwestern landowners, tenants at odds after farm boom tapers off. Read more ... », a Reuters examination of property records has foundCanadian mining executive Jim Doak found dead in Mongolia. Read more ... ».

The buildingTen shot, two dead near New York's Empire State Building. Read more ... » was renovated with helpFBI chief agrees with CIA on Russia’s alleged election help for Trump – report. Read more ... » from associates of Putin, and the rental income is paidClinton says she paid staffer to maintain private email server. Read more ... » to a privateClinton says she paid staffer to maintain private email server. Read more ... » company owned by a person whose name is the same as the maiden name of Putin’s former wife, corporate records showKerry to Visit Kiev to Show Support for Ukraine. Read more ... ».

The rentBad tenant Nina Willis fails to pay rent again, violating court order. Read more ... » comes from Volkonsky HouseHow to find out if someone died in the house you want to buy: Weisleder. Read more ... » in central Moscow, which was an aristocrat’s home in pre-Soviet timesMotorist slams car into Times Square pedestrians, killing one, injuring 22. Read more ... » and is now owned by The Centre for the Development of Inter-personal Communications (CDIC). Lyudmila Putina helped set up the non-commercial foundation, according to a reportFBI chief agrees with CIA on Russia’s alleged election help for Trump – report. Read more ... » in stateHigh State Tax Rate? You Probably Want to Move. Read more ... » newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta and two sourcesFBI examining fake documents targeting Clinton campaign: sources. Read more ... » who worked with the center. Lyudmila was Putin’s wife from 1983 until their divorcePrince’s wife got $6 million Toronto house in 2007 divorce: documents. Read more ... », which was announced in 2013.

The foundation was created in 2002, and in September 2006 Rossiiskaya Gazeta described Lyudmila as a “trustee” of the organization. In an interviewFBI likely to interview Clinton soon in emails probe: CNN. Read more ... » with the newspaper that year, she usedOTL: Kurt Busch's ex used charity as bank. Read more ... » the term “we” when discussing the foundation, and three sources currently familiar with the foundation’s work said Lyudmila supports a literary prize and publishing arm that the foundation runs.

The CDIC has offices in Volkonsky House, but most of the building is let out to tenants, including two big state banks, documentsPrince’s wife got $6 million Toronto house in 2007 divorce: documents. Read more ... » show.

The tenants pay rent to a company called'It’s called a koala, Tony': Twitter explodes after Abbott trades 'shirtfronting' Putin for cuddly joint pic. Read more ... » Meridian, which is 99 per cent owned by a company called Intererservis, corporate and property records reviewed by Reuters in early May showed. Intererservis, according to a state register of corporate entities, has been wholly owned since 2014 by a woman called Lyudmila Alexandrovna Shkrebnyova – which is the maiden name of Putin’s former wife.

Reuters was unable to findHow to find the best RRSP savings rates: Roseman. Read more ... » documents confirming that Shkrebnyova and Putin’s ex-wife are the same person. But other connections, besides the name, point to the former first10 tips for first time real estate investors. Read more ... » lady and the owner of Intererservis being the same person. A previous general director of Intererservis was Olga Alexandrovna Tsomayeva. Several Russian mediaForeign journalists stranded in N. Korea amid unexplained flight delays – media. Read more ... » reportsFive global powers agree on UN Security resolution draft to settle Syrian crisis – reports. Read more ... » refer to her as the sister of Putin’s former wife. Tsomayeva could not be reached for comment.

In addition, the other 1Prince’s wife got $6 million Toronto house in 2007 divorce: documents. Read more ... » percent of Meridian is owned by Tatiana Shestakova, who was the wife of Vasily Shestakov, an old friend and judo sparring partner of Putin, until the Shestakovs divorced in 2013. Shestakova, who also helped create the CDIC, according to the state registry of corporate entities, could not be reached for comment.

The KremlinKerry to explore Assad's future, Syria peace process in Kremlin talks. Read more ... » property departmentState Department Won’t Release Clinton Foundation s for 27 Months. Read more ... » supervised the renovation work on the Volkonsky House in Moscow’s Vozdvizhenka Street, according to rental documents reviewed by Reuters, evenExclusive: Trump surges in support, almost even with Clinton in national U.S. poll. Read more ... » though the building no longer belonged to the state at the time10 tips for first time real estate investors. Read more ... ».

A source involved in the renovation said Lyudmila Putina, then still the president’s wife, visited Volkonsky House to inspect the work. “We all knew that the (Kremlin property) department was constantly overseeing the processKerry to explore Assad's future, Syria peace process in Kremlin talks. Read more ... »,” said the source, who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity. “When Mrs Putin made an inspection visitKerry to Visit Kiev to Show Support for Ukraine. Read more ... », they immediately closed downRussian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov gunned down in Moscow. Read more ... » the whole of Vozdvizhenka Street.”

The Russian bank VTB, one of the current tenants in Volkonsky House, alone pays more thanPutin to NBC host: 'You and I have a much closer relationship than I had with Mr. Flynn'. Read more ... » $ 2 millionPrince’s wife got $6 million Toronto house in 2007 divorce: documents. Read more ... » in annual rent, according to a tender document posted on a government website in 2015.

Reuters was unable to establish the total income Meridian receives from renting out space in the Moscow property or what it‘Putin killed reporters? Prove it!’ – Trump to ABC show host. Read more ... » pays to the CDIC foundation. The company’s accounts for 2015 show revenues of 225 million roubles ($ 3.89 million), but do not disclose where the money goes.

Reuters sought comment from Meridian and the CDIC, via letters, telephone callsMP calls for colleagues to stop using Apple products over security fears. Read more ... » and visits, but received no reply. The Kremlin press service did not respond to questionsQuestions for the Electors on Russian Hacking. Read more ... » aboutClinton camp says FBI should say what it knows about Trump's Russia ties. Read more ... » the president’s former wife.

The arrangements appear to fit a pattern in Putin’s RussiaRussia faces ban from athletics for widespread doping offences. Read more ... », whereby people close to the president benefit from contracts, loans, grants or assets from state enterprises or entities closely linkedToronto mansion linked to Drake gets green light from city. Read more ... » to the Kremlin. Reuters has previously reported how Putin’s son-in-law, Kirill Shamalov, became a billionaire after'It’s called a koala, Tony': Twitter explodes after Abbott trades 'shirtfronting' Putin for cuddly joint pic. Read more ... » marrying a daughterTrump slams Nordstrom for treating daughter ‘unfairly’. Read more ... » of the president by acquiring a large stake in a leadingLeading Republicans, Democrats reject Trump's Obama wiretap assertion. Read more ... » Russian gas and petrochemicals company. Reuters also reported how Shamalov acquired a substantial property in Biarritz, FranceFrance worried over inspections in Auchan stores in Russia. Read more ... », from a close associate of Putin.

Artur Ocheretny, described in Russian media as Shkrebnyova’s new husband since 2015, is the chairmanKey U.S. Senate committee chairman wants briefing on Flynn. Read more ... » of the management board of the CDIC. In 2014, after a low-profile career running a seafood business and an event-organizing company, he too became the owner of an Art Deco villa in a suburb of Biarritz, according to local sources. His villa is estimated by estateHow to reduce estate taxes after you die: Roseman. Read more ... » agents to be worth about 6 million euros.

Ocheretny did not respond to a request for comment passed to him via the CDIC.

HELPFUL FRIENDS

The building at 9 Vozdvizhenka Street is known as the Volkonsky House after its former owner General Nikolai Volkonsky, the grandfather of author Leo Tolstoy. In the 20th century, Sergei Yesenin, a popular poet, wrote some of his worksRent-to-own works, but beware the pitfalls. Read more ... » there.

This historic site was laterState Duma chair backs initiative to move 2018 presidential polls to later date. Read more ... » owned by the Russian ForeignForeign journalists stranded in N. Korea amid unexplained flight delays – media. Read more ... » MinistryNATO aims to feed fears by painting Russia as ‘treacherous enemy’ – Russian Defense Ministry. Read more ... », according to a 1992 presidentialState Duma chair backs initiative to move 2018 presidential polls to later date. Read more ... » decree signed by Putin’s predecessor. By 2005, property records show, it had passed to a body called the Centre for the Development of the Russian Language, which later changed its name to the Centre for the Development of Inter-personal Communications.

Reuters was unable to establish on what terms the language center acquired the building. The agency that handles state property, Rosimushchestvo, did not respond to Reuters questions about the building.

The property was in need of renovation, and around 2005 majorRussia cyber attacks are 'major threat,' Congress probe hears. Read more ... » refurbishment was carried out. The president’s allies stepped in to help. The Konstantinovsky Foundation, which was set up soonFBI likely to interview Clinton soon in emails probe: CNN. Read more ... » after Putin became president to restore the Konstantinovsky Palace nearTen shot, two dead near New York's Empire State Building. Read more ... » Putin’s native St Petersburg, provided financial help, according to its website. The president often uses the palace to host‘Putin killed reporters? Prove it!’ – Trump to ABC show host. Read more ... » foreign leaders.

Vladimir Kozhin, who from 2000 until 2014 was headRussian-ESA ExoMars mission to pave way for future teamwork on Moon & Mercury – Roscosmos head. Read more ... » of the Kremlin property department, was on the board of the Konstaninovsky Foundation at the time the renovation work was carried out on Volkonsky House. Kozhin remains on the board, which has at least one other associate of Putin on it. Neither the Konstantinovsky Foundation nor Kozhin, who is now a presidential aide, responded to requests for comment.

Yelena Krylova, a spokeswomanRussian FM spokeswoman selected for BBC’s top 100 ‘inspirational’ women list. Read more ... » for the Kremlin property department, said she had no information about the department having been involved in the renovation.

The first phase of work was completed by 2005, according to property documents, and later an extra floor was added. Natalia Samover, a historian who campaigned againstUS Senator says North Korea launched ‘virtual bomb’ against Sony. Read more ... » the addition, told Reuters: “The building has lost its historical appearance. We no longer have the Volkonsky House, we have an eyesore half a kilometer from the Kremlin.”

Volkonsky House now has 5,288 squareMotorist slams car into Times Square pedestrians, killing one, injuring 22. Read more ... » meters of floor space available for rent, according to the state property register – an area slightly larger than the White House in Washington D.C.

VALUABLE TENANTS

Foundations such as the CDIC can be created for “social, charitable, cultural, educational, scientific and management objectives,” according to the Russian Justice Ministry. They can carry out entrepreneurial activity so longObama’s expulsion of Russian officials the latest wrinkle in a long history. Read more ... » as it serves the purpose for which a foundation was created. 

For an undisclosed amount, the CDIC lets most of Volkonsky House to Meridian, which sublets out space in the property. VTB, one of Russia’s largestOne of Europe’s largest mosques opens in Moscow (PHOTOS, VIDEO). Read more ... » banks, rents 3,011 square meters, according to the 2015 tender document posted on the state procurement website. That document givesHollywood mogul David Geffen gives $100M to Museum of Modern Art. Read more ... » the value of the contract as 584 million roubles overMP calls for colleagues to stop using Apple products over security fears. Read more ... » a fiveFive global powers agree on UN Security resolution draft to settle Syrian crisis – reports. Read more ... » year period, or $ 2.02 million per year.

Asked to comment, VTB said in a statement: “We rent these premises for the needs of the retail and corporate businesses of VTB group.”

Other tenants includeTwo charged with Nemtsov killing include former Chechen policeman. Read more ... » state lender Sberbank; the Severstroygroup construction company, which has won defenseNATO aims to feed fears by painting Russia as ‘treacherous enemy’ – Russian Defense Ministry. Read more ... » ministry contracts; a travel agency; a sushi restaurant; and a Burger King outlet. Sberbank said it had rented space at market ratesHow to find the best RRSP savings rates: Roseman. Read more ... » as part of its branch strategy; Severstroygroup did not respond to requests for comment.

Knight Frank, an agency that specializes in highHigh State Tax Rate? You Probably Want to Move. Read more ... »-end real10 tips for first time real estate investors. Read more ... » estate, said that current market rates in the building wereRussia says Iran nuclear talks were 'quite promising'. Read more ... » about $ 600 per square meter per year. If all the leasable space in the building were let at that rateHigh State Tax Rate? You Probably Want to Move. Read more ... », it wouldNorth Korea nuclear test would face "firm" U.N. action: South Korea. Read more ... » generate annual revenue of $ 3.18 million.

Meridian’s income does not appear to go to its main owner, Intererservis, which reported revenues in 2015 of just 2.4 million roubles ($ 41,478) and a net profit of 1.76 million roubles ($ 30,417).  

The CDIC’s most recent available accounts show that in 2015 its income from all sources was 343,350,000 roubles ($ 5.93 million). It was not clear what all those sources were.

In 2015 the CDIC spent 262,317,000 roubles ($ 4.53 million), according to the accounts, of which 3.4 percent was spent on social and charitable help, 6.5 percent on holding conferences and seminars, 22 percent on administrative costs and 29 percent on “other activities.” The remaining 39 percent was spent on acquiring fixed assets, stock and other property, and on “miscellaneous” items.

The CDIC did not respond to questions about the sources of its income and how it spent its money.

The Justice Ministry said the foundation had not made annual reports on its activities – as opposed to its financial accounts – publicly available, despite being required to do so by law. The ministry said the foundation had therefore been issued with a warning.

(This version of the story was refiled to fix spelling of Intererservis in paragraph 7)

(Additional reporting by Kira Zavyalova; Editing By Richard Woods and Christian Lowe)

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