In the latest of his viral videos alleging corruption in the highest levels of Russian politics, opposition leader and anti-corruption activist Alexei Navalny claims that the country’s Prime Minister, Dmitry Medvedev, has appropriated a commercial jet for his wife’s private use, Deutsche Welle in Russian reports.
Navalny has for years been publishing investigations over the use by senior officials of planes, yachts and expensive mansions for their families and lovers.
According to his latest allegations, the Prime Minister’s wife, Svetlana Medvedeva, secretly owns a $50 million Bombardier Global 5000 small business jet that she uses to fly to Europe and Russian cities.
Using flight and corporate records, the veteran whistleblower has argued that Russian officials are quietly reassigning aircraft from the Kremlin-run bank VTB to offshore companies in order to fly their significant others on expensive vacations to Europe and business trips in Russia.
He matched news reports of 11 trips Medvedeva made to various cities from 2015-2019 with flight-tracking data that placed the Bombardier in these cities on or around those dates. For the 12th match, Navalny referred to a Greek planespotting website that openly mentioned the jet “transferring the wife and the child of the Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev” in 2012.
“Your wife uses a private jet Bombardier 5000 which costs $50m. She flew for many hours … Who paid for this? Whose jet is it?” Navalny said, addressing Medvedev, in a video, released ahead of an annual press conference held by the former Russian president and ally of Vladimir Putin.
In a separate viral video released earlier this week, Navalny claimed that Andrey Kostin, the head of state-run bank VTB, had similarly appropriated a Bombardier Global 6000 business jet and a yacht for his reported girlfriend, Nailya Asker-Zade, a prominent television journalist on state-run Russia-24.