A Ukrainian court seized two $11 million-worth Antonov An-148 regional passenger jets owned by an undisclosed Russian joint-stock company.
The court decision came into force on January 23, 2023, according to a statement from the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine.
“At the request of the Prosecutor General’s Office, the court seized two An-148 aircraft belonging to a Russian joint-stock company,” the statement read. “According to the decision of the National Security Council of Ukraine, personal special economic and other sanctions were applied to the owning company.”
The Prosecutor General’s Office explained that the Russian firm allegedly used a Cypriot offshore entity to “enter into a lease agreement for these aircraft with a Ukrainian company” in order to circumvent sanctions imposed in 2021.
Both planes were registered in Ukraine as UR-CTC and UR-CTF, and prepared to be delivered to Russia, but lease contracts were terminated immediately after Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2023. Since the beginning of the war, both planes remained in storage at Kyiv-Zhuliany International Airport (IEV) in Ukraine.
In the meantime, Ukraine opened another investigation into the undisclosed Ukraine-based airline, which was the last to fly both Russian planes.
“Under the procedural guidance of the Prosecutor General’s Office, the pre-trial investigation in criminal proceedings on the facts of aiding and abetting the aggressor state and collaborative activities continues and is carried out by the Main Investigative Department of the Security Service of Ukraine,” the prosecutor’s statement concluded.