Vladimir Putin’s ‘assets are managed by people close to him’, including this friend

A friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin—a concert cellist—transferred millions of francs through Swiss bank accounts without proper investigation, Swiss prosecutors alleged ahead of the trial of four bankers accused of helping him. Prosecutors believe that Sergei Roldugin, a close friend of the Russian president, deposited millions of francs in Swiss bank accounts between 2014 and 2016.

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Four bankers have been charged with lack of diligence in financial transactions, Reuters reported, with prosecutors alleging they failed to determine the identity of the beneficial owner of funds. The bankers include three Russians and one Swiss working in Zurich. All of them have denied the allegations leveled against them.

Sergei Roldugin – also known as “Putin’s wallet” – was named as the owner of two accounts opened in 2014 at Gazprombank Switzerland, in which millions of francs flowed out of Russia, the report said. Sergei Roldugin also appears on the Swiss list of approved Russians. He is one of several members of Vladimir Putin’s inner circle sanctioned by the West following Russia’s 2022 invasion of Ukraine.

According to Reuters, the indictment said the case exposed how Sergei Roldugin was a “strawman” – hiding the true owners of the money. The indictment states, “It is well known that Russian President Putin officially has an income of only 100,000 Swiss francs, and that he is not wealthy, but in fact possesses vast assets, managed by individuals close to him.” Is.”

Vladimir Putin previously said that Sergei Roldugin is a friend, a brilliant musician and philanthropist who honestly made some money from a minority stake in a Russian company. The Kremlin has also rejected any allegations on Sergei Roldugin’s ties with Vladimir Putin.

“At the time of account opening, various articles stated that Sergei Roldugin was a close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin and godfather to his daughter,” the indictment states.

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