US seizes Russian oligarch’s plane with ties to Luxembourg

Subscribe us on Google News


US authorities will try to seize this private jet, with tail number P4-MGU

Photo Credit: Anna Zvereva/Wikimedia Commons

By Simon Martin and Andrea Oldereide

The United States will move to seize an €87 million private plane with likely links to a Luxembourg charter company, owned by a Russian oligarch that is the target of Western sanctions.

Andrei Skoch owns the Airbus A319-100 with tail number P4-MGU, which is believed to be worth more than $90 million, the US Justice Department said on Monday.

The billionaire is a member of Russia’s legislative authority, the Duma, and owns the plane through a series of shell companies and trusts linked to his partner, the Justice Department said. The plane has been in Kazakhstan since March, US investigators said, and likely out of reach of US authorities. Kazakhstan has long maintained friendly relations with Russia.

The plane had been registered in Aruba since at least 2019 and owned by a company on the Caribbean island since 2013, US investigators said. The plane was operated for Skoch by an unnamed “European-based private charter company,” a US investigator said in a court statement on Monday.

That charter company was Global Jet Luxembourg, according to two aircraft locator websites, Flightradar24.com and Airfleets.fr.

US prosecutors were given clearance to seize Skoch’s plane after a New York City court found probable cause that the oligarch violated federal anti-money laundering laws, the Justice Department said.

Global Jet Luxembourg declined to comment for this story. The company has been caught up in sanctions put in place against Russian oligarchs after Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February.

In March, six private planes with connections to sanctioned Russians were decommissioned in Luxembourg, meaning they could no longer access international airspace. All six aircraft were operated by Global Jet.

Luxembourg froze €430 million in cash belonging to sanctioned oligarchs and blocked another €1 billion in securities, the Finance Ministry told the Luxembourg Times in July. While the €430 million is in bank accounts registered in Luxembourg, €1 billion is securities owned by sanctioned individuals and companies. Overall, the Grand Duchy has frozen €4.5 billion worth of Russian assets, including €210 million worth of goods held in the Luxembourg free port.




Source