The United States Department of the Treasury removed an abandoned $120 million Russian superyacht from its sanctions list, clearing the way for the vessel to be auctioned to the highest bidder.
The 82 metre superyacht ALFA NERO was laid up in Antigua’s Falmouth Harbor in March 2022 after Russian troops invaded Ukraine. Last year, the US Treasury imposed sanctions on Russian fertilizer billionaire Andrey Guryev, naming him as the owner of the yacht, an allegation the magnate denies.
Facing a mountain of unpaid bills, the government of Antigua formally seized the superyacht in April and asked the US Treasury to lift sanctions on the vessel so she would be sold.
The Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda has welcomed the news that the US Government has removed the super yacht – ALFA NERO from its sanctions list. The news was delivered on Thursday 1st June by Antigua and Barbuda’s Ambassador to the United States who has been leading the effort in Washington to have the ALFA NERO removed from the List of the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN) of the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
Ambassador Sanders explained that because the yacht is now lawfully owned by the Government of Antigua and Barbuda, through the Antigua and Barbuda Port Authority if which she’s reported as ATG flag already, the superyacht is no longer linked to the sanctioned Russian Oligarch, Andrey Guryev, and his family, and, therefore it is not regarded as ‘blocked property’.
Bills have been piling up since Antigua formally seized the superyacht last April, with crew expenses alone costing $112,000 a month. Her normal crew of 44 has been reduced to skeleton crew of 6. 25 members have sued to recover $2.1 million in unpaid wages, according to Craig Jacas, a local lawyer representing them. Antiguan officials have said they’ve already received 20 bids for the Oceanco built superyacht ALFA NERO.
All images of ALFA NERO are whilst leaving Grand Harbour, Malta back to 6th April, 2011.