His financial empire was built with a systematic system, using public resources and a close circle of friends. Could harsh financial sanctions really touch the man who controls Russia’s wealth?
- Putin’s financial empire was built systematically, using public resources and a close circle of friends.
- Observers say he made billionaires out of fellow spies and colleagues in Saint Petersburg who helped him.
- “He managed his finances in a way that is entirely consistent with the greatest leader of organized crime on earth,” says former US illicit financial official David Asher.
Saint Petersburg was one of the richest seaports in Russia. But in the early ’90s, she was starving.
The city then known as Leningrad was reeling amid the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Grocery shelves were bare. So the deputy mayor put together a plan. Saint Petersburg will license the export of some of the region’s natural resources and use the money to feed its people.
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