Support The Moscow Times!

Investigators: American Caught Smuggling Jewelry at Domodedovo

The owner of a U.S. jewelry maker who attempted to cross the green channel at Domodedovo Airport with more than 25 million rubles ($800,000) worth in jewelry and watches is suspected of evading customs duties, investigators said Wednesday.

Leon Landver, 63, faces five years in prison if charged with evading more than 8.5 million rubles in duties. A LinkedIn Russia profile in his name lists him as the CEO of M&L Jewelry. It was not immediately clear whether he had been taken into custody.

After landing on a flight from Geneva on Sept. 9, Landver attempted to pass through the green customs channel, designated for passengers who have nothing to declare, the transportation branch of the Investigative Committee said in a statement.

He was stopped by a customs officer, and a body search revealed several wristwatches and 161 pieces of jewelry, the statement said.

This is at least the fourth incident in recent months involving U.S. citizens attempting to smuggle jewelry into Russia, Interfax reported.

In September, a Khimki court gave Delta Air Lines flight attendant Susanna Dikker a 220,000 ruble fine for attempting to smuggle 8 million rubles worth of jewelry into Russia. Another flight attendant from the U.S. figured in a similar case last month.

On Oct. 26, a court in Domodedovo fined a U.S. national 200,000 rubles for attempting to smuggle exclusive wristwatches worth 18 million rubles, Interfax said.

Related articles:

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

The Moscow Times’ team of journalists has been first with the big stories on the coronavirus crisis in Russia since day one. Our exclusives and on-the-ground reporting are being read and shared by many high-profile journalists.

We wouldn’t be able to produce this crucial journalism without the support of our loyal readers. Please consider making a donation to The Moscow Times to help us continue covering this historic time in the world’s largest country.