Officials in Russia's remote Far East have been accused of exploiting former Hollywood action star Steven Seagal to promote a flagship Kremlin economic program.
The government's regional website announced on Tuesday that Seagal would build a new sports school under the government’s “free land in the Far East” program as part of a new reality television show.
The report said that cameras would capture the actor’s every move as he “chooses his plot of land” and “submits documents” to the land registry..
But Seagal's spokesperson later claimed that the actor's name had been hijacked to promote the free land scheme, calling the reports "nonsense and disinformation."
The "free land" program, which aims to boost the economy of Russia's Far East, gives Russian citizens the chance to claim a hectare of land for residential construction, farming or business. After the five-year period, those occupying the land can receive full ownership, which will allow them to rent or sell the plot.
Steven Seagal became a Russian citizen on November 25, 2016, receiving his passport directly from Russian President Vladimir Putin.