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The oligarch’s sister and former Arsenal football club shareholder Alisher Usmanov has been sanctioned by the EU after a Guardian investigation named her in connection with 27 Swiss bank accounts containing billions of pounds .

Usmanov’s sister, Saodat Narzieva, was among relatives of Russian officials and oligarchs added to the EU sanctions list on Friday in response to the war in Ukraine. Usmanov has been under EU sanctions since February.

“Alisher Usmanov transferred considerable assets to his sister Soadat Narzieva, including a one-time payment or gift of $3 million,” EU said. “She also had 27 Swiss bank accounts, holding hundreds of millions of dollars, which can be linked to her brother,” he said, citing the findings of a recent investigation by the Guardian and media partners, including the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project.

Last month, the Guardian and partners revealed that Usmanov’s sister appeared to have been the sole beneficial owner of 27 secret corporate accounts at Credit Suisse, many of which were linked to Usmanov’s media, metals and mining conglomerate. .

While a handful of accounts were closed in 2016, as many as 18 were still active in recent years and could be frozen as a result of EU sanctions. One of these accounts held up to 1.9 billion Swiss francs (CHF) (£1.6 billion) and another held almost 1.4 billion Swiss francs (£1.2 billion ), according to leaked documents seen by the Guardian as part of the Swiss Secrets leak that revealed owners of 30,000 Credit Suisse clients.

Credit Suisse said it was unable to comment on individual accounts due to Swiss banking secrecy laws, but confirmed that “as a matter of principle and policy, the bank applies all sanctions, especially those issued by the EU, the United States and by Switzerland”. “…As we have made clear, our strategy puts risk management at the very heart of our business.”

It is unclear why Narzieva, who is a gynecologist and obstetrician at a maternity clinic in the Uzbek capital, Tashkent, was named on accounts associated with her brother’s business empire.

A spokesman for Usmanov previously said the Credit Suisse data was “false and incorrect” and said there was nothing untoward about his financial dealings with his sister. They also said Narzieva did not “have possession or control of any accounts at Swiss banks in her brother’s name.”

A spokeswoman for Narzieva said she did not know why her name would appear as the beneficial owner of any account at Credit Suisse and “has never held any money or other assets in Mr. Usmanov’s name. On the contrary, she received gifts from her brother, which long predate the current international crisis and the recent sanctions regimes.

“Furthermore, these gifts, although considerable in absolute terms, are of only limited importance compared to Mr. Usmanov’s business interests and personal wealth,” the spokesperson said.

This is the first time that the sister of the businessman of Uzbek origin has been sanctioned because of her relationship with her brother. Usmanov, who has been described as “one of Vladimir Putin’s favorite oligarchs” and once held a 30% stake in football club Arsenal, has also been sanctioned by the United States and the United Kingdom.

Usmanov was not immediately available for comment.

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