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Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Police arrest defiant Ukrainian sailor for ‘partially sinking’ £5 mln yacht owned by Russian boss who makes weapons for Putin

An irate Ukrainian sailor who tried to sink a rich Russian’s £5 million-plus yacht in the Med after war broke out at home has been set free and declared: “I’d do it again.”

The unnamed 55-year-old mechanic said he scuppered the vessel in Mallorca because he claims his boss sells weapons to Putin that are being used to kill and maim his countrymen.

He told police: “I don’t regret anything I’ve done and I would do it again.”

The 156ft luxury yacht, named Lady Anastasia, was moored at Pord Adriano by Alexander Mijeev, a former head of the Russian Helicopter Corporation who took over state-owned weapons supplier Rostec six years ago.

Mijeev’s member of staff, who had worked for him for several years, decided to sink the ship shortly after Russia’s invasion began.

He allegedly opened three valves on the five-cabin yacht so it would take on water “in an act of revenge,” according to Mallorcan newspaper Ultima Hora.

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The three other crew members had no idea of the plot until he is alleged to have rushed in and told them to abandon ship saying: “Don’t worry because I will take all the blame.”

When the police arrived he is said to have been waiting next to the boat as it went down and reportedly told a Civil Guard: “My boss is a criminal who sells weapons that kill the Ukrainian people.”

The court heard that he was watching the news and saw a Russian missile attack on Kyiv.

Within two hours he had gone to Lady Anastasia and decided he would sink it. He even decided to shut the fuel valves to avoid polluting the marina.

The saboteur opened a valve in the engine room to bring in water – and two more in living quarters for the staff and crew.

The result is that the yacht became partially submerged but still tied to its moorings.

After his arrest he admitted responsibility but was freed by a judge. It is still not clear if he has been charged with an offences.

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