Lottery winner to lose millions in connection with Russian state theft
Posted: May 13, 2019, 3:30 a.m.
Last update on: May 13, 2019, 3:30 a.m.
A british lottery The winner who claimed her lavish lifestyle was funded by a £ 2.5million ($ 3.24million) jackpot she won in 2008 was doomed to lose millions after a National Crime Agency (NCA) investigation identified her as a cog in a global money laundering operation.
Mother-of-three Amanda Nuttall, 45, couldn’t adequately explain how her lotto windfall had covered her and her husband to charter private jets for family vacations to Cannes and Dubai, collect supercars and buy high-end properties.
Instead, investigators suspected that her husband Jonathan Nuttall – who has previously been convicted of tax and social fraud – was part of a crime syndicate that had embezzled money from the Russian state and washed dirty money for one of Europe’s most notorious drug traffickers.
The NCA said Jonathan Nuttall structured his business so that his assets were listed in his wife’s name, leaving her struggling to explain how his lottery winning funded some 100,000 transactions the NCA analyzed over the course of of his eight-year investigation.
Investigators followed the trail of the money to Nuttall from a separate investigation into the operations of Amir Azam, a British national and a known associate of Pakistani drug lord Shahbaz Khan, who was appointed ” Foreign Narcotics Hub ”by the administration of George W. Bush.
The two men are currently serving life sentences in the United Arab Emirates for trafficking massive amounts of heroin from the Middle East through networks that have spread around the world.
According to court documents, as the net closed around Azam, he decided to make Jonathan Nuttall a “useful contact” after meeting him in Dubai in 2005.
Hundreds of millions in dirty money
NCA believes money linked to Russian embezzlement and fraud in UK was laundered through a network of shell companies registered in UK, Russia, Austria, States United, Croatia and Seychelles. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been transferred to more than 100 bank accounts held in the UK, Russia, Hong Kong and Switzerland, according to the NCA.
“Jonathan Nuttall has amassed considerable wealth as a result of his illegal conduct and that of others,” said Andy Lewis, NCA asset denial officer. “The defendants were high-ranking in their communities and had an interest in local properties and businesses. Crime certainly did not pay off in this case.
Amanda Nuttall and two others linked to Jonathan Nuttall’s operations – property mogul Eric Grove, 89, and lawyer Timothy Becker, 55 – have been ordered to confiscate a total of £ 6million in property , including an award-winning boutique hotel and a Bentley Mulsanne.