Great Britain

Inside Putin’s shadowy world with secret daughters, £160bn fortune & assassinations as he prepares for Biden showdown

WITH a shadowy fortune estimated at £160billion, secret daughters, and deep rooted connections to the KGB - they don't come more mysterious than Vladimir Putin.

Russia's supremo will today meet with US President Joe Biden for the first time both as leaders in a summit which is predicted to be tense and a return to the uneasy status quo between the US and Russia.

Biden is expected to confront Putin as relations between the two superpowers have hit rocket bottom - with the veteran Democrat branding his opposite number a "killer".

Election meddling, cyber attacks and military tensions over Ukraine are all expected to be on the table as the two butt heads and squabble for status on the world stage.

Despite great overtures to warm up relations between the West and Russia at the end of the Cold War, things have frozen over once again in the last decade.

Putin's lavish lifestyle, shadowy past and hardman persona could not be more at odds with his opposite number, with Biden often seen as the bumbling but lovable uncle of US politics.

Vlad has already barbed at Biden for being a "career politician" - and suggested his attempts to talk tough about the him "Hollywood" tactics in an effort to appear "macho".

Russia's leader would much rather pose for pictures shirtless, be seen out hunting or competing in judo, while Biden prefers wholesome photo-ops indulging his love of ice cream or playing with his dogs.

And behind Putin's often mocked tough guy persona appears to murky money and levels of power that would make a James Bond villain blush.

His enemies also tend to find themselves dying or having high profile attempts of their lives.

Vlad is estimated by opposition activists to have a personal fortune of up to £160billion - owning a fleet of cars, yachts and secret presidential palaces.

If this is claim is accurate - it would make Putin the world's richest man, more flush than Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos.

Putin always talks down his wealth – claiming to enjoy a relatively modest state wage of around £100,000.

"Career politician" Biden is estimated to have a net worth of around £6.3million - around 0.004 per cent of Putin's wealth.

Political critic Boris Nemtsov compiled a dossier which alleged Putin even has four yachts secretly docked around Russia.

He also claimed Putin has 43 planes, 7,000 cars and 15 helicopters – including an Illyshin jet with a £50,000 gold toilet.

Nemtsov added Russia's leader even has a watch collection which is worth some £500,000 – including one which is £300,000 alone.

And perhaps one of his most lavish palaces is said to be a sprawling £1billion pile at Gelendzhik on the Black Sea, which even appears to have a stripper pole.

Putin is alleged to use his personal wealth to create a "slush fund" for his family members - including his alleged mistresses and secret daughters.

It is reported this is part managed by Godfather-like figure billionaire Yury Kovalchuk, who has been described as the second most powerful man in Russia by opposition Proekt Media.

Leaked information shows that a pro-Kremlin media group that Kovalchuk has close ties to, pays Putin's alleged partner Olympic gymnast Alina Kabaeva, 37, close to £8million a year, and made her chairman.

Shares to the same value in Rossiya Bank were arranged as “alimony” for a suspected former mistress, cleaner turned millionaire, Svetlana Krivonogikh, who Proekt claim is the mother of a secret Putin daughter Luiza.

SLUSH FUND

It is also that Kovalchuk’s empire  has also provided indirect  financial backing to Putin’s two daughters Maria Vorontsova, 35, and Katerina Tikhonova, 34, from his marriage to former Russian first lady Lyudmila, which ended in 2013.

Kovalchuk - worth £1.8 billion - controls directly or  indirectly some 90 per cent of Russia’s “traditional media”, the report claims. 

Proekt went on to say: “In other words, all Putin’s important women have been settled by (his) personal Consigliere.

“The futures of Katerina, Maria, Svetlana and Alina are in the safe hands of Yury Kovalchuk."

Krivonogikh's daughter Luiza Rozova, 18,  also known as Elizaveta, s a student who has her own fashion label and works as a DJ.

Luiza often shares snaps from her lavish life on Instagram, but its unclear where she gets much of her wealth - fuelling rumours of her links to Putin.

Putin, 68, has not publicly acknowledged the enterprising student, nor any relationship with her mother, who has remained silent on the speculation.

The teenager however shares a striking resemblance to Vlad, something even she admits - but she has also not confirmed any relationship to him.

Putin is believed to have had an affair with her mother n the late 1990s and early 2000s, including the period when he headed Russia’s FSB counterintelligence service. 

Meawnhile, Putin's other daughters are Dr Maria Vorontsova, 36, a geneticist, and Dr Katerina Tikhonova, 34, a dancer-turned-mathematician.

While neither was identified as being the Kremlin leader’s daughter, it is thought this is an “open secret”.

Putin has spoken of Maria and Katerina, but gave no details about their jobs or lives.

Ahd while funding Putin's family, his fortune also allowshim to live like the tsars of old with a ritzy portfolio of palaces.

In 2017, it was reported Putin had bought himself a lavish holiday home with gold-plated tiles in the swimming pool just a few miles from Russia's border with the West.

Officially it belongs to close friends of the Kremlin but locals say it is the latest prestige home in a stunning property portfolio rumoured to be Putin's.

And while enjoying this life of luxury, Putin is ruthless in tackling any threat to his regime - often throwing critics in prison or trying to kill them.

Alexei Navalny is currently his number one foe - attempting to poison the opposition activist with the nerve agent Novichok.

At least eight prominent critics of Putin and his regime are suspected to have been poisoned after being taken ill in mysterious circumstances.

Poisonings linked to the Kremlin have left opponents disfigured, in medically induced comas, and worst of all dying slow and painful deaths.

And the method seems to differ every time, with poison-tipped umbrellas, chemical agents daubed on doorknobs, or simply toxins spiked into victims food and drinks.

Another high profile case was the

 poisoning of MI6 double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury on March 3, 2018.

The duo were left fighting for their lives after the nerve agent Novichok was daubed on the doorknob of his home.

Putin's suspected poison victims

EIGHT enemies of Vladimir Putin have been suspiciously taken ill in suspected poisonings since 2004.

Anna Politkovskaya - Poisoned after drinking tea given to her by an Aeroflot flight attendant in September 2004. She was later shot dead in Moscow in October 2006.

Viktor Yushchenko - Left disfigured after consuming food laced with chemical TCDD also in September 2004. Managed to recover and win the Ukrainian presidency on a pro-West platform - serving from 2005 to 2010

Alexander Litvinenko - Died after being poisoned with radioactive polonium in London in November 2006. Blamed Putin for the attack on his deathbed.

Vladimir Kara-Murza  - Taken ill after suspected to have been poisoned on an Aeroflot plane in May 2015. He was then believed to be poisoned again in February 2017.

Pyotr Verzilov - Hospitalised after becoming ill in Moscow after visiting court proceedings against anti-Putin band Pussy Riot on Setepmber 12, 2018.

Sergei Skripal - Found critically ill on a bench in Salisbury after believed to have been poisoned with Russia-developed nerve agent Novchok on March 4, 2018.

Yulia Skripal - Taken ill alongside her dad on the same day. Both spent weeks fighting for their life in hospital in a brazen attack that shocked the UK.

Alexei Navalny - Left screaming and violently ill after he is believed to have drunk poison tea before boarding a flight in Tomsk on August 20, 2020.

Putin has spent the better part of two decades in power after first emerging from the shadows after the fall of the Soviet Union.

He was a former KGB agent who was once based in East Germany posing as a translator - before turning to politicians in 1990.

After a meteoric rise through the ranks in the fractious post-Soviet Russia, Putin was made president in 2000.

He served back-to-back terms, had a stint as Prime Minister in 2008 to 2012, before being elected president again.

After reportedly being shaken by the Western-backed Libyan uprising that killed Colonel Gaddafi in 2011, Putin has consolidated his iron grip by changing election laws and crushing any opposition.

He is reported to have decided he would stand up against the West, or feared he would be next to be torn apart in a revolution.

Critics have argued Putin would rather "drown Russia in blood" than ever give up power - and he seen by some as the KGB once again seizing power in Russia.

Sweeping changes to the constitution will allow himself to remain in office until at least 2036, but there are ongoing rumours about his health.

Joe Biden arrives in Geneva ahead of Putin meeting after calling leader a 'killer'

Football news:

Spalletti on 3-0 with Bayern: Napoli is on the right track. The players have already exceeded my expectations
Kane wants to move to Man City with Grealish. He will soon discuss leaving with Tottenham
Real Madrid reported that Odriosola has contracted the coronavirus
Gasperini about Ilicic: He wants to find a team where he will achieve something more significant
Mbappe will not play in the match for the French Super Cup. The game will be held in Israel
Benfica introduced Yaremchuk. The forward of the national team of Ukraine moved from Gent
17-year-old Gurna-Duat can move to Atalanta from Saint-Etienne for 10 million euros