Chief Minister orders review into 'unlawful' searches of Abramovich's properties

Jersey Police searched properties linked to Roman Abramovich in April 2022. Credit: PA

Jersey's Chief Minister has ordered an independent review into illegal police searches carried out at properties linked to Roman Abramovich.

It's after Jersey Police apologised and agreed to pay damages to the Russian oligarch, according to legal documents seen by Reuters.

Deputy Kristina Moore, the island's top politician, says if mistakes were made, it's important authorities learn from them so they aren't repeated:

"One of Jersey's strengths is our high-quality judicial system, which alongside a highly regulated professional services industry, has assured the island's position and reputation as an internationally respected and well-regulated jurisdiction.

Deputy Kristina Moore said Jersey will 'never' make funds available to anyone being sanctioned by the UK or UN.

"The government requires all Jersey authorities to adhere to the highest international standards, including the most stringent checks and balances.

"I have therefore requested an independent review is undertaken following recent media reports relating to an ongoing investigation led by Jersey's Economic Crime and Confiscation Unit within the Law Officers’ Department. This will ensure any lessons learned can be considered and implemented in the most expedient manner."

She added the review would not impact the ongoing legal proceedings.

Mr Abramovich's assets in Jersey - worth more than $7 billion - were frozen as part of international sanctions imposed following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Deputy Moore said contrary to reports of compensation being paid, no money will be given to Mr Abramovich while he is the subject of international sanctions:

"I should be clear that the Jersey authorities will never make funds available to anyone designated under UK or UN sanctions. Our sanctions authority acts without fear or favour and all sanctioned individuals have access to proper license arrangements."