Russia Bank and SMP Bank have $637 million blocked in the United States

Among the shareholders of these banks are the members of Putin's inner circle, reminds the WSJ.
US authorities blocked the assets of the bank "Russia" and "SMP Bank" for a total of $ 637 million, according to The Wall Street Journal. The newspaper has requested that data from the US Treasury Department under the law on freedom of information. The Ministry of Finance has provided data about blocked from March 15 to October 15, 2014 media organizations, among which also the Tula Instrument Design Bureau (KBP), and individuals. In the latter case, however, the names are hidden for the protection of personal information.

In March 2014 in response to the US annexation of Crimea Russia President Barack Obama imposed sanctions on supporters of his Russian politicians and officials and businessmen close to President Vladimir Putin. Among them was Yury Kovalchuk brothers Arkady and Boris Rotenberg and Gennady Timchenko. Also, sanctions were imposed on Kovalchuk based Banks "Russia" (it as the largest shareholder owns 37.5% of shares), which the Americans called a personal bank senior Russian officials: "Among the shareholders - members of Putin's inner circle, associated with the dacha cooperative" Lake " . Cowalchuk - a close adviser to Putin, talking about him as one of his cashiers, said a statement from the US Treasury. The assets of these people and the "Russian" in the United States were to be blocked, the Americans and US companies barred from doing business with them. According to the decree the Obama sanctions could be extended to other property companies or individuals that have provided financial, material or technological support to persons from the list. In particular, companies that directly or indirectly controls.

Later in the sanctions lists were made and other Russian companies, in particular "SME Bank", in which Arkady and Boris Rotenberg owned by 38.05% of the shares, as well as Sobinbank owned by "Russian", and many arms manufacturers.

According to the documents the Ministry of Finance provided the WSJ, the bank in the US "Russia" frozen $ 572 million; at today's exchange rate is about 10% of the assets of the bank for 2013, which amounted to 338 billion rubles. Locked amount includes money Sobinbank child. The "SMP Bank" on dozens of bills in various US financial institutions forice creams at least $ 65 million (about 2% of total assets for 2013 is 170 billion rubles.). Finance Ministry receives data from mandatory reports of financial companies, which have to follow the sanctions.

The "Russian" fixed assets, $ 435,433,344, blocked on one account - in the registrar Computershare's company, which, in particular, distributes dividend payments and manages customer packages of shares.

What it is not clear for the assets of the "Russia" held in bank Computershare and other American companies. "It seems that Computershare managed foreign investments" Russia ", - said the WSJ Lee Hairs, a former White House official and expert on sanctions, who now works for the law firm Boeis, Schiller & Flexner. The amount of documents Ministry of Finance may reflect the market value of the securities, which were difficult to sell quickly, he said.

It is not known whether the bank "Russia" tried to withdraw their assets and funds of the United States, notes the WSJ. Its second largest blocked account - to $ 73,132,260 at JPMorgan Chase, who was a correspondent bank for "Russia", and for "SMP Bank".

In Russia",Computershare and JPMorgan Chase declined to comment, the WSJ points.

The "SMP Bank" funds are hundreds of accounts. The largest amount - $ 6.4 million - was in Citibank NA, even millions of dollars were on the accounts of Deutsche Bank, MasterCard, etc. All the banks declined to comment.. The representative of "SMP Bank" Igor Ilyukhin said the funds frozen in the United States "insignificant" and that sanctions have had little effect on the bank's activities. According to him, the US frozen, "much less" $ 65 million referred to the Ministry of Finance, but he refused to tell the details.

Funds in US financial institutions "SMP Bank" were frozen in April 2014, according to a press release, "Interfax" released them today. "After that time, no funds of the bank and its customers have been frozen bank continues to fulfill all its obligations in rubles and in foreign currency In addition, the amount of assets frozen is significantly less than reported by the US authorities..", - Said in a statement.

Among other Russian companies, whose funds have been frozen in the USA - Instrument Design Bureau, one of Russia's largest defense companies (developing guided weapons for land forces, air defense systems, rapid-fire guns and combat firearms). He has nearly $ 10 million on four accounts in Citibank. The PCU WSJ journalist for comments redirected to the head structure (bureau included in the holding company "NPO" Precision Systems "State Corporation" Rostec "), but there is a representative was unavailable for comment. It is not clear why the CBI in respect of which sanctions were imposed even before the events in Ukraine (US Bureau accused in supplying military technology to Iran more than 10 years ago), generally held any assets in the United States, notes the WSJ.

Regarding the frozen assets of individuals, many of them. The largest such account - at $ 2 million - in the bank Brown Brothers Harriman.

Representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republic (looks like the WSJ points out, under their real names) have also opened a PayPal account to $ 5354 and $ 637. these accounts blocked the company.