The Italian government has seized properties belonging to former Haas F1 driver Nikita Mazepin and his father. Located on the north of the island of Sardinia, the assets are estimated to be worth around €105 million ($114.3 million at current exchange rates).
The government’s operation targeted a villa known as Rocky Ram belonging to the Mazepins who have been included in an EU sanctions list, reports Reuters. The racing driver’s father, Dmitry, is described as a member of President Vladimir Putin’s closest circle in the EU’s official journal.
The seizures were part of a larger effort by Italian authorities, which have sequestered villas and yachts worth more than €900 million ($980 million) from wealthy people associated with the Russian government and seek to penalize the country for its invasion of Ukraine.
The most valuable asset seized so far is a €530 million ($577.1 million) superyacht owned by billionaire Andrey Igorevich Melnichenko. It was seized at the port of Trieste.
Nikita Mazepin was hired to race for Haas F1, an American-owned Formula 1 team, for the 2021 season. Following the invasion of Ukraine, Haas fired the underperforming driver before he had a chance to race in what would have been his second season in the sport. A sponsorship contract from his father’s company, Uralkalli, was also canceled and its logos, which dominated the car’s livery, were removed.
Russia commenced its invasion of Ukraine in February, displacing and killing countless people as well as sowing uncertainty in the European economy, which has affected a number of automakers.