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Prince Charles charity link to Russian offshore network

March 5, 2019 5:07 am

An investment bank led by an oligarch who collaborated with Prince Charles on charity work managed a network of offshore companies moving billions out of Russia.

An international investigation has exposed how the network received money from companies linked to major fraud.

The oligarch, Ruben Vardanyan, is the former boss of Moscow investment bank Troika Dialog.

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He says he was not involved in the bank’s day to day operations.

Money from the network was sent to the Prince’s Charities Foundation to help restore Dumfries House, a stately home in Ayrshire.

The prince’s charities said they had subjected Mr Vardanyan’s donations to robust due diligence and no red flags had been raised.

The web of more than 70 offshore companies is exposed in a leak of 1.3 million confidential bank transactions to the Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), a consortium of east European investigative journalists who shared information and documents with the BBC and the Guardian.

Between 2009 and 2011 the Prince’s Charities Foundation received three payments, adding up to $202,000 via a now-defunct bank in Lithuania.

The leaked bank data show the last of the payments went to an account held by the Prince’s Charities Foundation.

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