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U.S. Lawmakers Submit Bill to Investigate Putin’s Finances

Two U.S. congresswomen have introduced legislation seeking to instruct the American intelligence community to disclose Russian President Vladimir Putin’s finances and report on Kremlin-linked corruption.

Critics have accused the Russian leader of amassing a fortune during his 18 years in power as either president or prime minister. Official figures say Putin’s income between 2011 and 2016 totaled $675,000, while investigative journalists have said that his family and friends are worth almost $24 billion.

The newly submitted Vladimir Putin Transparency Act instructs the director of national intelligence to report on “assets, investments, bank accounts, other business interests, and relevant beneficial ownership information” on Putin and his family members.

The best way to assail the power of Putin and his enablers is to go after the illegal and secret financial streams that fund their operations,” Florida Representative Valdez Demings said Wednesday.

The bill’s co-author, New York Representative Elise Stefanik, accused Putin and his political allies of “consolidating their political control through unethical means.”

The Democratic and Republican congresswomen introduced the legislation the same month as a bipartisan group of U.S. senators submitted a bill that would impose stiff new sanctions on Russia over its meddling in U.S. elections and aggression against Ukraine.

That bill instructs President Donald Trump to impose sanctions on political figures, oligarchs, and other persons that facilitate illicit and corrupt activities, directly or indirectly, on behalf of Putin, and persons acting for or on behalf of such political figures, oligarchs, and persons.

Reuters contributed reporting to this article.

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