In the summer of 2013, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his wife Lyudmila divorced. Three years later, it turned out that the ex-wife of the president married for the second time - for Arthur Ocheretny, the head of a non-profit foundation close to her - and took the name of her new husband. Before the divorce from the president, Lyudmila Putin had a very small annual income, but recently she and her relatives began to buy land and luxury real estate in Moscow and abroad. A year ago, Medusa published an investigation by Olesya Shmagun, correspondent of the Center for the Study of Corruption and Organized Crime (OCCRP), on how Arthur Ocheretny bought a villa on the Atlantic coast. Now Shmagun talks about the assets of the former wife of the president in the elite district of the Moscow region - and how they got to her from people close to Vladimir Putin.
The cottage settlement "Millennium Park", located 20 kilometers from Moscow along the New Riga, is called near Moscow Venice. In Odintsovo district in general, many holiday complexes with expensive real estate, which realtors define with words like "luxury" and "premium class". The peculiarity of the "Millennium Park" is a network of man-made canals and small reservoirs running between sites. Along the canals there are pedestrian paths and boulevards; as the advertisement says, they "resemble neat European streets".
"Territory is very beautiful. 40% of the village - it's park areas and areas near the water, - says a telephone employee of the company-developer of the project Villagio Estate. - There is a private beach. From each quarter - its access to the park. The village is closed, perimeter security, and random people will not get there. I would not like to name specific names, but famous people live in every village, from artists to ministers. "
Ministers among people who bought land in the Millennium Park, OCCRP could not be found. But there are many relatives of large Russian businessmen and officials: for example, the mother of the co-owner of the Mercury company Leonid Strunin, the grandmother of the co-owner of Sovkombank Mikhail Kuchment and the son-in-law of the first head of the Russian customs Anatoly Kruglov.
Active development of the village began in 2010; now on the site "TsIAN", where real estate is being traded, you can find many ads about the sale of small land in the Millennium Park. The average cost of weaving is about 1.6 million rubles. Similar figures are called by developers who are engaged in Moscow real estate - so, the project manager "Istra Valley" Mikhail Afrikanov in conversation with OCCRP estimated the average cost of a hundred weights of 1.8 million rubles.
According to documents from Rosreestr, in 2016 almost two and a half hectares of land - 240 acres - was bought by Lyudmila Ocheretna in the Millennium Park (after the second marriage they call Vladimir Putin's ex-wife). She acquired at once eight sections along one of the canals. They cost, according to various estimates, could from 384 to 432 million rubles - while, according to the realtor Villagio Estate, proximity to water and wood significantly increases the cost of land.
Suzanne and its owner
Vladimir Putin always liked to emphasize that he was from a simple low-income family. "I lived as an ordinary normal person, and I always have this connection," he said in his biography. When the American director Oliver Stone asked the president directly about the riches attributed to him, Putin replied: "This is bullshit. If it were, it would have been shown long ago. "
Before the divorce from the president, his wife was also consistent with this image. While the husband ruled the country, she, according to available data, was engaged in housekeeping. In Putin's pre-election declaration, which he filed before the presidential elections in 2012, it is stated that his wife for the past year received income only from a bank deposit - 146 thousand rubles. For all the time when she reported on her finances, the largest amount she managed to earn in 2011 - 443 thousand rubles for the year, that is 36 thousand rubles a month. Plots of land and apartments that were in the common property of the spouses remained after the divorce for the husband.
Soon, now, already own the former wife of the president began to appear their own assets. In January 2016, the publication "Interlocutor" reported that she now owns an apartment of 139 square meters on the Vasilievsky Island in St. Petersburg, which Putin's family owned since 1995. From the documents that were at the disposal of the "Interlocutor", it also followed that Lyudmila Putin married the director of the non-profit foundation "Center for the Development of Interpersonal Communications" Arthur Ocheretny - and took the husband's surname. In April 2017, the OCCRP found out that Ocheretnoy owned a villa in Biarritz, France, for more than six million euros; it was bought in December 2013 - six months after the divorce of Vladimir and Lyudmila Putin. Local residents called this villa "Suzanne".
Mansion from "War and Peace"
"Center for the Development of Interpersonal Communications" (CMMC), which since 2010 headed Ocheretny, was associated with Lyudmila Putina when she was still the first lady: the president's wife, who appeared infrequently in public, repeatedly visited the fund's activities; on the state television channel "Culture" she was called "the curator of the organization" (originally the foundation was called the "Center for the Development of the Russian Language"). Among the founders of the non-profit foundation are all people close to Vladimir Putin. It was the Central Committee of the Russian Federation that after the divorce became the source of income for Lyudmila Putina.
The last 13 years in the ownership of the center is the house on Vozdvizhenka, 9, two steps from the Kremlin. The noble mansion was built at the end of the XIX century, it is believed that it was from him that Leo Tolstoy in War and Peace wrote the house of Andrei Bolkonsky. The area of the building is 7.5 thousand square meters, the cadastral value is about 2.5 billion rubles. Until 2005, the building was in charge of managing the affairs of the president - and then it was in the ownership of the fund, "overseeed" by Putin. About how and under what conditions it happened, the documents of Rosreestr do not say anything: the graph "the cause of the transition of law" is simply not filled. In response to a request from OCCRP in Rosreestr explained that the building changed the owner as a result of an investment contract concluded between the Presidential Affairs Office and the CMMC. In the management of the President's affairs at the time of publication of this material, questions about the building were not answered.
In 2010, when TsRMC headed Ocheretny, another house was built next to the mansion - also four-storeyed and in the same style as the old "Bolkonsky house". The buildings are connected by a special outbuilding-crossing. Most of the premises in both buildings are in long-term lease from the company "Meridian", which, in turn, gives them to sub-tenants - state-owned Sberbank and VTB, restaurant chains "Wabi-Sabi" and "Burger King", microcredit organization "Moscow mortgage house "and so on. Lyudmila Shkrebneva (the maiden name of Putin-Ocheretnaya) owns the Meridian. The company with such a significant asset went to her after the divorce, in 2014.
"Meridian" brings a good income by the standards of the majority of Russians: the last few years, the company's net profit is measured in tens of millions of rubles. Nevertheless, this money for the purchase of a site in the "Millennium Park" Ocheretnaya would still not be enough. By January 2016, when the deal to buy two and a half hectares was completed, the company's total net profit for the two years that the company recorded on Ocheretnoy amounted to 77.5 million rubles - five times less than the estimated value of land in the "Moscow Region Venice ".
The former wife of the president through the company "InteriorService" owns 99% of the "Meridian". Another 1% accounted for Tatiana Shestakov - the former sole proprietor of "Interiorservice" and "Meridian". Shestakova was also one of the founders of the Central District Hospital. And it was shestakova Lyudmila Ocheretnaya bought in 2016, two hectares in the Millennium Park.
Shestakova is not a stranger to the president's family. Her husband is a longtime friend of Vladimir Putin and his sparring partner in judo Vasily Shestakov, who from 2006 to 2016 was a State Duma deputy from United Russia, and now heads the Sambo Federation. The present family status of the Shestakovs is not completely clear: from the declaration of the spouse Tatyana Shestakova disappeared in the same year of 2013, when Putin's divorced.
Ludmila Ocheretnaya did not have much time for her plot in "Venice of Venice near Moscow". In November 2017, she sold all two and a half hectares to a new owner - Irina Punia, wife of Vikram Poonia, the founder of one of Russia's largest pharmaceutical companies, Pharmasynthesis. In a telephone conversation with the OCCRP, Punia confirmed the purchase of land, but said he did not know anything about the previous owners, because the deal was through a real estate company. The cost of purchased sites, he refused to call.
Villa "Suzanne", which in 2017 wrote "Medusa" and OCCRP, also does not use the attention of the owners: its reconstruction seems suspended. The last time the OCCRP correspondent visited the building last fall: the material that covered the bas-relief on the porch was worn out, there were still no window frames and several walls. The owner of "Suzanne" remains Arthur Ocheretny - only now it is recorded in the French cadastre not on the head of the Center personally, but on his company registered at the address of the villa.