Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Microsoft founder Bill Gates were recently in the news for overtaking each other as the world’s richest man. While Bezos fought hard for the position and a sudden surge in Amazon shares made him the world number 1, Gates overtook him after a few hours, according to Forbes and Bloomberg ranking. Meanwhile, there is this man who might be worth more than both of them combined. A financier Bill Browder has said that the net worth of Putin is expected to be around $200 billion. The CEO of Hermitage Capital Management reportedly testified to a Judiciary Committee, and the full text of the testimony was obtained by The Atlantic. To give you a perspective, Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos are together worth around $175 billion, according to Forbes data.
Browder told Congress, according to The Atlantic: “…he is one of the richest men in the world. I estimate that he has accumulated $200 billion of ill-gotten gains from these types of operations over his 17 years in power.” He added, “He keeps his money in the West and all of his money in the West is potentially exposed to asset freezes and confiscation.” Browder said that the reason Putin has accumulated such a large amount of wealth is because of his wicked practices. He said, “There are approximately ten thousand officials in Russia working for Putin who is given instructions to kill, torture, kidnap, extort money from people, and seize their property.”
You may want to watch this video of Vladimir Putin’s journey:
Browder had hired a lawyer named Sergei Magnitsky to investigate the seizure of his company. Magnitsky was tortured and killed later in 2009, a CNBC report said. Browder was testifying in front of Congress for this reason. Browder was known to be a highly successful businessman operating in Russia and was on friendly terms with Putin but this all changed after the incident. He has also been an advocate against corruption in Russia for a long time now. The CNBC report said that Browder was called as part of a Congressional hearing in the possible interference of Russia in the US elections.
In the testimony, Browder describes a Russian system of government that operates in the shadows using corruption, blackmail, torture and murder – all led by Vladimir Putin. Browder said: “Effectively the moment that you enter into their world, you become theirs.”