US probes firm linked with Abramovich over hedge fund investments - NYT

The US investigation is partly focused on how Abramovich's associates used several offshore shell companies to invest $8 billion in hedge funds and private equity firms.

 Roman Abramovich watches his team during their English Premier League soccer match against Arsenal (photo credit: REUTERS/EDDIE KEOGH)
Roman Abramovich watches his team during their English Premier League soccer match against Arsenal
(photo credit: REUTERS/EDDIE KEOGH)

US federal authorities are investigating investment advisory firm Concord Management, which oversaw hedge fund investments worth billions of dollars for Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, the New York Times reported on Tuesday.

The investigation, being conducted by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), is partly focused on how Abramovich's associates used several offshore shell companies to invest $8 billion in hedge funds and private equity firms, the report added, citing people close to the firm. 

The authorities are seeking information about the flow of money to and from more than a dozen shell companies based in havens like the British Virgin Islands and the Isle of Jersey, the NYT report said.

In June, a US court issued warrants for the seizure of two luxury planes owned by Abramovich under US measures imposed after Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

 Russian billionaire and owner of Chelsea football club Roman Abramovich arrives at a division of the High Court in central London October 31, 2011.  (credit: REUTERS/ANDREW WINNING) Russian billionaire and owner of Chelsea football club Roman Abramovich arrives at a division of the High Court in central London October 31, 2011. (credit: REUTERS/ANDREW WINNING)

Impacts of Ukraine-Russia War

The US Department of Justice is also seeking broader authority from Congress to seize Russian oligarchs' assets as a means to pressure Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine, a prosecutor said in July.

In March, a KleptoCapture task force was launched to enhance the United States' ability to punish wealthy Russians whom Washington accuses of enabling Russian President Vladimir Putin to invade Ukraine. 

The SEC and Concord Management did not immediately respond to Reuters' requests for comment, while the FBI declined to comment.