How the US Government Wastes Millions on a Russian Oligarch’s Amadea Yacht

Superyachts, even when seized, are treated regally by the US Government. Regardless of whether the billionaire owner enjoys their prized possession, the fact remains that these seized superyachts are maintained with governmental funds, preserving their allure, irrespective of the owner’s active use of these prized assets. This is the situation facing the US government, which is irritated at having to pay for the extravagant beauty treatments on a Russian oligarch’s opulent superyacht. Amadea Yacht, worth $330 million, was seen sailing around San Diego Bay after being seized 19 months prior.

It has been parked at Pepper Park in National City for nineteen months, according to CBS8. Presently, the government wants to sell the Russian yacht while the case regarding forfeiture is pending. In addition to being a stunning design by renowned shipyard Lurssen, keeping Amadea afloat without a suitable owner and crew is a waste of taxpayers’ hard-earned money, with at least $1 million being spent each month. The maximum boat size that can be accommodated at Pepper Park is 120 feet, and the 4,402 GT ship takes up space there. The 348-footer would incur expenses of $45++ per foot or an astounding $15,000 per month for parking alone.

Additionally, CBS8 brought attention to the fact that a portion of the upkeep of the opulent ship entails prolonged engine operation at sea. Tracking the yacht revealed that it had taken a five-hour trip that circled the coast of La Jolla before landing back at its dock. The Amadea is a floating palace that can hold at least 103,555 gallons of fuel in its 392,000-liter tank. Filling up the tank might cost as much as $767,000, which is twice as much as a Boeing 747 Jumbo jet. Diesel worth $10,000 to $15,000 or more could be easily burned during a 5-hour routine maintenance trip.

When weighed against a smaller motor yacht with comparable amenities, like Alfa Nero, which is 269 feet long, the latter requires at least $2,000 in diesel every day to run its generators, mostly for air conditioning. But because the Amadea is bigger and more opulent, it probably uses even more fuel for air conditioning. After all, the United States government, the property’s owners, is obligated to shield the winter garden, marble flooring, hand-painted walls covered in books, and other treasures from the damaging effects of sea mist.

The Amadea has an onboard movie theater with D-box seats and a popcorn maker, an outdoor deck with a 20,000-watt speaker system and lasers, and an owner’s cabin with a mosaic-lined pool, and 2,000 fiber-optic cables that recreate the night sky, complete with all the signs of the zodiac. All of these onboard electrical systems must also be functional. It wouldn’t be shocking if these upscale, custom systems were maintained by skilled technicians.

After reviewing the case, former US Attorney for San Diego Charles La Bella said, “It’s costly maintenance.” It’s far more expensive than, say, putting a seized car in a lot and paying $150 a month to have it sit there until forfeiture is decided, La Bella said. He also emphasized a crucial point: the United States government will need to demonstrate that the real owner is a sanctioned Russian oligarch to prevail in the lawsuit.

Those with sufficient funds to purchase a vessel such as this typically conceal themselves behind LLCs and bearer bonds, leaving a paper trail that is nearly impossible to unravel,” La Bella said. Although it is a difficult task, it must be completed. It’s possible that the forfeiture case in New York City won’t be resolved by year’s end, according to CBS8.

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