Is Vladimir Putin the richest man alive?

Russia At War

(NewsNation Now) — As the situation evolves along the Russia/Ukraine border, speculation runs rampant about the wealth of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Some speculate his wealth could be bigger than that of Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates combined. 

Earlier this year, images leaked by allies of imprisoned Russian activist Alexei Navalny showed a palace lifestyle that’s anything but modest for the Russian leader.

Estimates place the palace’s value at $1.3 billion or more.

The Anti-Corruption Foundation, a Russian nonprofit, said the palace was funded through a corruption scheme in which Putin’s inner circle paid the president for access and influence. 

The Kremlin, however, has denied those claims.

Putin’s wealth is a difficult puzzle to solve. He has made declarations in the past about what assets he owns, but critics believe that is just the tip of the iceberg and Putin may be one of the wealthiest men in the world. Putin and the Kremlin have repeatedly denied such claims.

Navalny alleged in one investigation that a luxurious palace and estate in southern Russia had been built for Putin himself and allies of Navalny published hundreds of photos of what they said is the secret palace. 

It reportedly includes towering ceilings, a casino, a theater and a room for pole dancing.

The Kremlin has denied those claims, as well.  

Theories about how Putin makes his money typically involve the Russian president exploiting businesses, friends and government allies.

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