Spanish public prosecutor looks to seize Russian yacht

The public prosecutor of Palma da Mallorca, Spain, wants to seize superyacht Tango (IMO 1010703), which it says is owned by Russian individual Viktor Vekselberg.

Currently the yacht is being detained in the port of Palma at the request of the US authorities. Prosecutors have asked US judicial authorities for more documentation on the case, in particular regarding information on whether criminal investigations were underway against the owner of the Tango.

The documentation originally provided by the US had been described as somewhat sparse.

Viktor Vekselberg’s legal representative in Spain appealed to the Criminal Court in Palma, which executed the US order, arguing that the American judge’s order failed to clarify whether criminal proceedings were pending against the yacht owner.

Legal cooperation agreements between the US and Spain provide that a criminal investigation must have been initiated in one of the two countries in order to be able to proceed against the person to be investigated.

The Tango was confiscated in early April in a joint action by the Guardia Civil, the FBI and other US authorities. Vekselberg was under investigation for allegedly trying to conceal the yacht.

The report by the FBI agent that served as the basis for the seizure said that Vekselberg was among those suspected of working with Putin in 2018.

As of May 18th the vessel remained moored in Palma.

2011-built, Cook Islands-flagged, 2,083 gt Tango is owned by Arinter Management Inc care of Master Yachts Safety SL of Palma, Majorca, Spain.