- 176 cops were deployed to remove four protesters from Oleg Deripaska’s London mansion, Vice reports.
- London’s Metropolitan Police spent about $100,000 on the operation in March.
- Protestors stormed the property after Deripaska was sanctioned by the UK.
UK authorities deployed 176 cops and spent about $100,000 removing four protesters from a sanctioned Russian oligarch’s London mansion, Vice reported.
Three days later, a group stormed a mansion in London said to belong to Deripaska. Members said they wanted to use the property to house Ukrainian refugees, stood on its balcony and hung signs with slogans including “this property has been liberated.”
The day before, UK Housing Secretary Michael Gove said he wanted to “explore an option” to use sanctioned individuals’ properties “for humanitarian and other purposes.”
London’s Metropolitan Police sent a total of 81 officers, several vehicles, a helicopter, and a JCB cherry-picker to the property in London’s Belgrave Square.
The immediate response cost about £35,700 ($43,700) in terms of staffing expenses, Vice reported, citing figures obtained through a Freedom of Information request.
A further 95 officers were also deployed at a cost of about £45,420 ($55,650), according to Vice.
The total bill for the operation came to £81,112 ($99,387).
A Metropolitan Police spokesperson said a significant number of officers were required due to the size of the property, the need to establish cordons in the area and for specialist officers trained in working at height.
“Officers who were already on duty for another event were redeployed to this incident to assist local officers. They, in turn, were relieved by colleagues after a certain amount of time. The figure for the number of officers involved therefore reflects the total resources used over the full duration of the incident, not the number deployed at any one time,” the spokesperson said.
“The incident was ultimately resolved safely, in a timely manner and without excessive disruption to the wider public.”
Four people on the house’s balcony were arrested while another four were arrested for trying to gain access to the protest, police said.
Deripaska is among a small group of oligarchs who have condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, saying in February that peace negotiations should begin “as fast as possible.”
A spokesperson for Deripaska said that the London property was owned by his family, rather than him personally. She said the oligarch and his family were “appalled at the negligence of Britain’s justice system shown by Boris Johnson’s cabinet in introducing the sanctions,” Reuters reported.
He was sanctioned by the US in 2018 following Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region in 2014 over ties to both the Russian government and the state energy sector.
Deripaska sued the US Treasury in 2019 over the sanctions alongside his inclusion in a report on Russian oligarchs, but a US court dismissed his appeal earlier this year.