THE Russian owner of Park Place in Remenham is wanted on criminal charges in his homeland.
Andrei Borodin, 45, who bought the £140 million estate in 2011 to make it Britain’s most expensive house, has been granted asylum by the Home Office.
He is accused of corruption involving loans of £285 million at the Bank of Moscow, which he used to own.
It is alleged he loaned the money to shell companies that switched it to the wife of Yuri Luzhkov, the long-serving Moscow Mayor until 2010.
Mr Borodrin, who was listed as the 117th richest person by Forbes in 2012 with an estimated $800 million fortune, alleged that he was forced out of the bank in an act of persecution by current Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.
He told a Russian newspaper: “My lawyers submitted an application to the Home Office, stressing that the persecution in Russia against me and my colleagues was politically motivated.
“There are politicians’ interests behind it, including former president Dmitry Medvedev, who is the main initiator of these persecutions and victimisation.
“We made a statement that all the criminal cases opened against me in Russia were merely the weapon of this illegal and politically motivated persecution and so the British government decided to give me political asylum.”
His political asylum was confirmed by Mr Borodin’s Moscow-based lawyer Dmitry Kharitonov, who said there was no time restriction on his asylum.
Mr Borodin claimed Mr Medvedev forced him to sell his stake in the bank for £465 million, half of its true value, so it could be used as a “pension pot” for the Russian premier.
He fled the country in April 2011 after being told he faced corruption charges.
Mr Medvedev’s press secretary Natalya Timakova denied persecution and said the accusations against Mr Borodin were of “pure criminal character”.
In July 2011, the Bank of Moscow was taken over by state-controlled VTB bank in a $14 billion bailout.
It was the biggest rescue in Russian financial history and Mr Borodin was blamed by the Russian authorities for its problems.
In October last year, Mr Borodin, who is on Russia’s international wanted list, claimed he had been targeted by a surveillance operation on the M4.