London: A YouTube video, showing a $1.4 billion palace near Russia’s Black Sea, has gone viral. The property allegedly belongs to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The drone footage shows a vast 170-acre land with an ultra-luxurious mansion, two helipads, underground hockey rink, strip poles and a number of security structures.
The video was uploaded by jailed Alexei Navalny, a Russian politician and Putin critic who was nearly killed by a nerve agent attack in Germany in 2020.
Navalny alleges that the uber-luxury palace was built using illicit funds of Putin’s billionaire friends.
“[They] built a palace for their boss with this money,” Navalny says in the video.
The Kremlin has denied Putin’s involvement in the property.
“This is not true. There is no palace, he is not an owner of any palace,” Putin’s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told CNN earlier this week. “Those are all rumors, and there were some disputes between the owners of those premises, but they really have no connection with President Putin.”
“This is like a state within a state where one irremovable czar rules,” Navalny says in the video. “It is built in a way that no one can reach it by land, sea or air, thousands of people working there are banned from bringing even a simple cell phone with a camera… but we will take a look inside.”
He also claimed that Russia’s Federal Security Service owns a larger parcel of land surrounding the palace.
Navalny’s anti-corruption group had taken a boat into the Black Sea and sent a drone to get these footages.