Alisher Usmanov Investigation: Frankfurt am Main Court ruled on October 26 that, as part of the investigation against Uzbek-Russian businessman Alisher Usmanov, everything seized during illegal searches in 2022 had to be returned to its rightful owners. Among the seized property are important pieces of art and papers, including a Marc Chagall painting.
The Bavarian town of Rottach-Eggern, the Dilbar boat in Hamburg, and an apartment near Frankfurt am Main Court that belonged to Usmanov’s buddy were among the places that German police, including heavily armed special forces, searched in the fall of 2022.
Alisher Usmanov Investigation, who Forbes lists as the eighth wealthiest person in Russia with a worth of $14.4 billion, has denied ever having the luxurious yacht and has persisted in claiming his innocence in the face of accusations of money laundering. Through his company, USM Holdings Ltd., Usmanov has ownership over assets in a variety of industries, including media, metals, and phones.
The current decision is in line with a May 2023 court ruling that found the searches conducted by the German prosecutor’s office about a money laundering investigation into Usmanov were illegal and based on “unclear suspicions.” The legal team representing Usmanov has stated that political motivations are behind his indictment.
They have maintained that one of their points of contention was the willful act of keeping objects seized during searches that were previously ruled unlawful. The court ruled on October 26 that it was illegal for German police enforcement to keep the objects they had taken and that the respective owners of these things needed to be contacted.
Lawyers for the Uzbek Embassy in Germany, Drs. Peter Gauweiler and Thomas Fischer, have said that the decision is the result of a series of illegal actions that go against the legality and fairness of the actions taken by the German authorities to investigate Alisher Usmanov.
“The ruling from the Frankfurt am Main Court District Court serves as a reminder to German law enforcement agencies to uphold our country’s laws and to avoid arbitrary actions, even when dealing with foreign individuals.”