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Ukrainian Seafarer Attempts to Sink Yacht of Russian Weapons Executive

russian yacht
Yacht harbor at Palma de Majorca

Published Feb 27, 2022 7:06 PM by The Maritime Executive

A Ukrainian sailor stands accused of partially sinking the luxury yacht belonging to his employer, Alexander Mikheev. Mikheev is former CEO of defense contractor JSC Russian Helicopters and current CEO of Rosoboronexport, Russia's state-owned weapons export conglomerate.

Chief engineer D. Taras O., 55, told authorities that he is a Ukrainian national and had worked aboard Mikheev's luxury yacht for ten years. He decided to take action against Mikheev's property in retaliation for the ongoing invasion of Ukraine, and he opened a valve to introduce water into the engine room. He asked the rest of the crew - also Ukrainian - to abandon ship and allow the vessel to sink, but they declined and instead worked to stop the flooding. Their quick action prevented the vessel from sinking. When Spanish police arrived, the engineer took full responsibility. 

 "My boss is a criminal who sells weapons that kill the Ukrainian people," he told a judge at his arraignment hearing, according to the Majorca Daily Bulletin. He added that he had no regrets about what he had done.

The Lady Anastasia is a 2001-built superyacht of 157 feet in length. She has room for 10 guests and 9 crew, and her 5,600 hp powerplant propels her at speeds up to 23 knots. 

Spanish authorities are attempting to confirm the identity of the Lady Anastasia's owner, since - like most superyachts - her title is held by a holding company, not an individual.