'The world's most expensive safe deposit boxes': Here's how Russian oligarchs are hiding their money in Manhattan
Trump Tower in New York City (Flickr/Mattia Panciroli)

Some call them "the world's most expensive safe deposit boxes." They're the fabulously lavish, multi-million dollar condos in New York and other large U.S. cities that Russian oligarchs have been buying for the past decade. If they can have a "king of the world" view of Manhattan's Central Park, those ultra-rich Russians have thought nothing of shelling out $200 million per unit.

A report in Newsweek details how many of those transactions are designed to shield the oligarchs' assets by hiding the true ownership of the properties.

"Over the last decade," according to the report, "the city's developers have put up a series of supertall, jagged, toothpick towers at the bottom of Central Park, designed and marketed to the world's .01 percent, a tiny group in which Russian oligarchs are disproportionately represented." The area now is known in Manhattan real estate circles as "billionaires' row."

RELATED: Russian oligarchs may have trouble avoiding seizure of their multi-million dollar yachts: report

During his State of the Union address earlier this month, President Joe Biden announced the U.S. government would "go after the crimes of Russian oligarchs," and to "find and seize their yachts, their luxury apartments, their private jets." Carrying out any potential seizures could be problematic because many of them are held in the name of oligarchs' children, companies and trusts.

"The greatest amenity these opulent dwellings offered to Russian oligarchs, and others looking for a safe place to park their cash, was anonymity," according to the report. "Normally with buyers in New York, you need to know up front what's in their bank, in terms of liquid cash, but I would never dream of asking that question," Dominique Punnett, a half-Russian broker at Stribling & Associates, said. One Russian client who was looking for an ultra-high-end apartment made it clear to Punnett, without explicitly saying so, that "price is not an issue."

New York City isn't the only place ultra-rich Russians have stashed cash. In 2008, Dmitry Rybolovlev purchased Donald Trump's Palm Beach mansion for $95 million, for which Trump had paid $41.35 million only four years earlier.

You can read much more here.