Revealed: Critical update on £2.5bn Chelsea mystery after funds seized
The UK Government is still unable to confirm what has happened to the proceeds from the sale of Chelsea from Roman Abramovich to Todd Boehly in May, Football Insider can relay.
Abramovich was forced to sell the West London club for £2.5billion after he was made the subject of sanctions in March because of his links to Russian president Vladimir Putin.
The sale was allowed to go ahead under the proviso that the proceeds be donated to the victims of the war in Ukraine.
The Times reported in August that the funds remained frozen in Abramovich’s company bank account, with one unnamed MP describing the Foreign Office’s handling of the affair as “hopelessly slow”.
Transcripts of conversations from the House of Commons on Monday (31 October) accessed by Football Insider using the Parliamentary archive service Hansard show an apparent lack of progress since then.
Labour MP and chair of the Committees on Standards and Privileges Chris Bryant asked foreign secretary James Cleverly: “What has happened to the £3.5 billion [sic] from Abramovich’s sale of Chelsea, which was meant to have gone to the reconstruction of Ukraine by now?”
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Cleverly was unable to offer any meaningful clarification, saying only that he would “seek to get further details on the specific points that he [Bryant] raised on sanctions.”
The news comes after the government added two known business associates of Abramovich, Alexander Abramov and Alexander Frolov, to its sanctions list.
The 56-year-old oligarch was reported in September to have played a key role in a Russia-Ukraine prisoner exchange.
He is also claimed to have helped secure the release of several British prisoners from the conflict that same month.
Boehly has wasted no time dismantling Abramovich’s set-up behind the scenes at Stamford Bridge, enacting a raft of sweeping changes in the sporting and business departments.