MOSCOW – Russian state media on Sunday cited an unconfirmed report that Chelsea football club owner Roman Abramovich's British visa has run out, while his spokesman declined to comment.
Russian state news agency TASS and other media picked up a report on The Bell website, which said an acquaintance of Abramovich and two in his inner circle had told it the billionaire's British visa ran out three weeks ago and he is waiting for a new one.
Amid a spiralling diplomatic crisis between Britain and Russia over the poisoning of a former Russian double agent, there have been calls in Britain for sanctions that would hurt super-rich Russians who have homes in London.
Abramovich formally has residency in Jersey in the Channel Islands, a tax haven, but has never taken it up. The Sunday Times put his wealth at 9.3 billion pounds ($12.5 billion) on its Rich List this year. He has owned Chelsea since 2003.
Abramovich's spokesman John Mann told AFP he could not comment because "it's a personal issue." Mann gave the same response to TASS.