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FBI Efforts Since the Russian Invasion of Ukraine — FBI

Fraud, Bribery & CorruptionFBI Efforts Since the Russian Invasion of Ukraine — FBI

Since Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine one year ago today, the FBI has successfully disrupted criminal, cyber, and hostile intelligence activities from Russia that endanger Ukraine, our partners, and American citizens.

The FBI has surged personnel and technical resources in field offices across the country and our legal attachés overseas to protect the Ukrainian people and infrastructure, U.S. assets, and anyone threatened by the Russian government. We aren’t alone: The FBI is joined by our partners in this fight—whether from the private sector, the KleptoCapture Task Force, or our international law enforcement partners—because this threat requires everyone’s cooperation.

“It has been one year since Russia launched an unprovoked invasion of its neighbor, but the FBI has been working with our Ukrainian partners for years to battle Russian aggression there—and we aren’t going anywhere,” said FBI Director Christopher Wray. “The FBI’s commitment to Ukraine remains unwavering, and we will continue to stand against Russia at home and abroad.”

Over the past year, the FBI has successfully:

Identified over $500 million in assets belonging to Russian oligarchs and others who unlawfully supported the Russian regime, leading to warrants for their seizure.

Identified two luxury yachts: the Tango, a $90 million yacht owned by sanctioned oligarch Viktor Vekselberg and located in Spain at the time; and the Amadea, a $300 million mega-yacht owned by Suleiman Kerimov and recovered from Fiji
Identified eight real properties totaling approximately $100 million associated with Russian oligarchs and agents. These collectively include two condominiums in Beverly Hills, California; three luxury properties in New York and Washington, D.C.; an apartment on Park Avenue in New York City; an estate in Southampton, New York; an apartment on Fisher Island, Florida; and a penthouse apartment also on Fisher Island, Florida
Identified four airplanes: a $45 million Boeing 737-7EM owned by Russian energy company PJSC LUKOIL; two airplanes worth over $400 million owned by Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich; and a $90 million Airbus A319-100 owned by sanctioned Russian oligarch Andrei Skoch

Investigated over 10 individuals and corporate entities accused of sanctions evasion, export control violations, money laundering, and other crimes, leading to their indictment.

Investigated sanctioned oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev and Russian member of parliament Alexander Babakov for sanctions evasion and other related crimes
Investigated U.S. television producer Jack Hanick for his role in assisting sanctioned Russian oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev with his television network
Investigated U.K. businessman Graham Bonham-Carter for allegedly violating U.S. sanctions on behalf of Russian oligarch Oleg Vladimirovich Deripaska––and wire fraud in connection with Deripaska’s U.S.-based properties and artwork
Investigated sanctioned oligarch Oleg Deripaska and three co-conspirators for conspiracy to evade sanctions and making false statements
Investigated sanctioned former Ukrainian legislator Andrii Derkach for conspiracy to violate sanctions, bank fraud conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, and four counts of money laundering in connection with the purchase and maintenance of two U.S.-based properties
Investigated four individuals and two companies with violating U.S. export laws by attempting to smuggle a high-precision, computer-controlled grinding machine (“jig grinder”) to Russia for likely use in its defense program
Investigated Master Yachts, U.K. citizen Richard Masters, and Russian/Swiss national Vladislov Osipov for sanctions-evasion acts tied to the yacht Tango, attributed to sanctioned oligarch Viktor Vekselberg

Used intelligence and data analytics to prevent a broad range of national security threats stemming from Russia’s destabilizing activities in Ukraine.

Identified and stopped illegal transfers of weapons and civil-military, dual-use technologies—some of which have been recovered on battlefields in Ukraine—from illicit procurement networks illegally trafficking them to Russia
Proactively disrupted a global botnet controlled by the Russian military intelligence agency (GRU), similar to those used by the Russian government to attack Ukrainian targets during the invasion.
Maintained robust collaboration with Legat Kyiv to obtain developing intelligence on cyber activity related to the war, and to provide Ukrainian partners with actionable intelligence
Provided dozens of cyber-related notifications to the Ukrainian government and others to promote infrastructure and data security work. Those efforts resulted in the following actions taken by U.S. based service providers:

Mitigation of DDOS attacks targeting various Ukrainian government agencies
Suspension of social media, mobile application, and other communication accounts used to geo-locate, track, and broadcast the movement of Ukrainian military positions
Identification of the compromise of social media accounts belonging to members of the Ukrainian military
Identification of the use of social media channels to spread disinformation related to the war

Proactively identified and mitigated cyber threats to U.S. interests. As potential threats to critical infrastructure and private sector agencies were identified, the FBI proactively engaged those organizations throughout the country, in both classified and unclassified settings, to provide technical and contextual intelligence to better protect U.S. equities and national security.

Mobilized agents, and other personnel to investigate war crimes and other atrocities in Ukraine.

Partnered with the Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office to boost collaboration in the investigation and prosecution of crimes committed by Russia in Ukraine
Partnered with Ukraine’s National Police of Ukraine and State Border Guard Services to provide training and mentoring, including on tactical and criminal investigative assistance and forensics and evidence collection—foundational skills for war crimes

The FBI will continue to use our unique expertise and authorities to strengthen the resilience of our partner, Ukraine; protect U.S. national security; and inflict severe consequences on Russia and its enablers.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are independent views solely of the author(s) expressed in their private capacity.

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