Exclusive: Putin’s ex-wife connected to multi-million-dollar home company

MOSCOW (Reuters) – the wife that is former of president Vladimir Putin helped produce and today supports a foundation that owns a historic Moscow home producing huge amount of money from renters, a Reuters study of property documents has found.

The building had been renovated with assistance from associates of Putin, and also the leasing income is compensated to an exclusive company owned by an individual whose title is equivalent to the maiden title of Putin’s previous spouse, corporate documents reveal.

The lease originates from Volkonsky home in main Moscow, that was a home that is aristocrat’s pre-Soviet times and it is now owned by The Centre for the Development of Inter-personal Communications (CDIC). Lyudmila Putina assisted put up the foundation that is non-commercial relating to a study in state newsprint Rossiiskaya Gazeta as well as 2 sources whom worked with all the center. Lyudmila had been Putin’s wife from 1983 until their breakup, that was established in 2013.

The building blocks is made in 2002, as well as in September 2006 Rossiiskaya Gazeta described Lyudmila being a “trustee” associated with company. In an meeting using the magazine that 12 months, she utilized the word “we” when speaking about the building blocks, and three sources presently knowledgeable about the foundation’s work stated Lyudmila supports a prize that is literary publishing supply that the building blocks runs.

The CDIC has offices in Volkonsky home, but the majority regarding the building is let down to renters, including two big state banking institutions, papers reveal.

The renters spend lease to company called Meridian, that is 99 % owned by a company called Intererservis, business and home documents evaluated by Reuters in very early might revealed. Intererservis, in accordance with a state register of business entities, happens to be wholly owned since 2014 by a lady called Lyudmila Alexandrovna Shkrebnyova – that is the maiden title of Putin’s previous spouse.

Reuters had been struggling to find documents confirming that Shkrebnyova and Putin’s ex-wife would be the person that is same. But other connections, aside from the title, point to the previous very very first woman as well as the owner of Intererservis being the person that is same. A past basic manager of Intererservis ended up being Olga Alexandrovna Tsomayeva. A few Russian news reports relate to her due to the fact cousin of Putin’s wife that is former. Tsomayeva could never be reached for remark.

In addition, one other one percent of Meridian is owned by Tatiana peruvian brides Shestakova, who was simply the spouse of Vasily Shestakov, a classic friend and judo sparring partner of Putin, through to the Shestakovs divorced in 2013. Shestakova, whom additionally helped create the CDIC, according to the state registry of corporate entities, could never be reached for comment.

The Kremlin home division supervised the renovation focus on the Volkonsky House in Moscow’s Vozdvizhenka Street, based on leasing documents evaluated by Reuters, although the building no more belonged to your state during the time.

A supply active in the renovation stated Lyudmila Putina, then nevertheless the elected president’s wife, visited Volkonsky home to examine the task. “We all knew that the (Kremlin home) division ended up being constantly overseeing the procedure, ” said the foundation, whom talked to Reuters on condition of privacy. “When Mrs Putin made an examination see, they immediately shut along the entire of Vozdvizhenka Street. ”

The Russian bank VTB, one of many current renters in Volkonsky home, alone will pay a lot more than $2 million in yearly lease, in accordance with a tender document posted on a federal government web site in 2015.

Reuters ended up being struggling to establish the total income Meridian gets from leasing down area into the Moscow home or just what its smart into the CDIC foundation. The company’s accounts for 2015 show revenues of 225 million roubles ($3.89 million), but don’t reveal in which the cash goes.

Reuters sought remark from Meridian plus the CDIC, via letters, calls and visits, but received no answer. The Kremlin press solution failed to react to questions regarding the elected president’s former spouse.

The plans seem to fit a pattern in Putin’s Russia, whereby people near to the elected president reap the benefits of agreements, loans, funds or assets from state enterprises or entities closely from the Kremlin. Reuters has formerly reported how Putin’s son-in-law, Kirill Shamalov, became a billionaire after marrying a child associated with the president by acquiring a big stake in a respected Russian gasoline and petrochemicals business. Reuters additionally reported exactly how Shamalov acquired a significant home in Biarritz, France, from a detailed associate of Putin.

Artur Ocheretny, described in Russian media as Shkrebnyova’s new husband since 2015, could be the president for the management board for the CDIC. In 2014, following a low-profile job operating a seafood company and an event-organizing business, he too became the master of an art form Deco property in a suburb of Biarritz, based on neighborhood sources. Their property is calculated by auctions become well worth about 6 million euros.

Ocheretny failed to react to a obtain comment passed away to him through the CDIC.

HELPFUL FRIENDS

The building at 9 Vozdvizhenka Street is recognized as the Volkonsky home following its owner that is former General Volkonsky, the grandfather of writer Leo Tolstoy. Into the twentieth century, Sergei Yesenin, a well known poet, had written a number of their works here.

This historic site had been later owned by the Russian Foreign Ministry, in accordance with a 1992 presidential decree finalized by Putin’s predecessor. By 2005, property documents reveal, it had passed up to a physical human anatomy called the Centre when it comes to growth of the Russian Language, which later on changed its title into the Centre for the developing of Inter-personal Communications.

Reuters had been not able to establish on which terms the language center acquired the building. The agency that handles state home, Rosimushchestvo, didn’t answer Reuters questions regarding the building.

The house was at need of renovation, and around 2005 major refurbishment had been performed. The president’s allies stepped in to greatly help. The Konstantinovsky Foundation, that was arranged immediately after Putin became president to bring back the Konstantinovsky Palace near Putin’s indigenous St Petersburg, supplied help that is financial in accordance with its internet site. The president usually utilizes the palace to host international leaders.

Vladimir Kozhin, whom from 2000 until 2014 ended up being mind associated with Kremlin property division, ended up being from the board for the Konstaninovsky Foundation during the time the renovation work had been completed on Volkonsky home. Kozhin continues to be from the board, which includes a minumum of one other associate of Putin about it. Neither the Konstantinovsky Foundation nor Kozhin, that is now an aide that is presidential taken care of immediately needs for remark.

Yelena Krylova, a spokeswoman when it comes to Kremlin property division, stated she had no information on the division having been mixed up in renovation.

1st period of work had been completed by 2005, relating to home papers, and soon after a additional flooring had been added. Natalia Samover, a historian whom campaigned from the addition, told Reuters: “The building has lost its historic look. We no more have the Volkonsky home, an eyesore is had by us fifty per cent of a kilometer through the Kremlin. ”

Volkonsky home now has 5,288 square meters of living area designed for lease, in line with the continuing state home register – a place somewhat bigger than the White home in Washington D.C.