Wicker, Colleagues Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Seize Russian Oligarchs’ Assets to Aid Ukraine

March 15, 2022

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., today with Senators Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., introduced the bipartisan Asset Seizure for Ukraine Reconstruction Act, which would enable the seizure and sale of Russian oligarchs’ assets to support humanitarian efforts in Ukraine. 

“Putin’s cronies fuel and embolden his worst behavior,” Wicker said. “Any serious attempt to punish Putin for his unprovoked attack on Ukraine requires seizing the illicit funds of Russian oligarchs. This act would help ensure U.S. actions hit Russia’s ruling class directly by giving the Department of Justice increased latitude to act swiftly in preventing the liquidation of assets by Russian oligarchs.”

This legislation would enable the President to declare an emergency upon finding that Russia is engaged in hostilities against Ukraine and begin seizing Russian oligarchs’ property. The funds derived from seizure and sale of assets would go toward post-conflict reconstruction in Ukraine. Such programming would include humanitarian assistance, military assistance for the armed forces of Ukraine, supporting refugees and their resettlement, or technology and services ensuring the free flow of information to the Ukrainian people.

The bill would also authorize cash rewards administered by the Treasury Department for people who provide information leading to the confiscation of assets, or to any nonprofit humanitarian organization that identifies ill-gotten assets for seizure.

The full text of the legislation can be found here.