Biden steps up efforts to confiscate assets of Russian oligarchs — White House

28 April, 06:37 PM
U.S. President Joe Biden (Photo:REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein)

U.S. President Joe Biden (Photo:REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein)

U.S. President Joe Biden will submit to Congress a proposal for a comprehensive legislative package that will expand the government's powers to hold the Russian government and oligarchs accountable for the war against Ukraine, according to the statement released on April 28.

The White House press service said the package will grant the U.S. government new powers to confiscate property linked to the Russian kleptocracy, with the proceeds being used to support Ukraine. It will also further strengthen the related law enforcement tools.

Another proposal in the package is to make it a crime for any person to knowingly or intentionally possess funds obtained directly from corrupt dealings with the Russian government.

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A third proposal expands the U.S.'s ability to use the funds of sanctioned oligarchs to remediate harms caused to Ukraine by Russian aggression.

A further proposal concerns the property used by Russian oligarchs to evade sanctions.

Current law allows the United States to seize funds obtained from violations of sanctions, but it is not able to confiscate property that is used to evade sanctions. This proposal closes this loophole.

The U.S. Treasury Department has already imposed sanctions and seized ships and aircraft worth more than $1 billion, and frozen hundreds of millions of dollars in assets in U.S. bank accounts owned by Russia's elite.

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