Russian billionaire Tinkov agrees to pay $500 million over U.S. tax charges

October 2, 2021 9:25 AM EDT

FILE PHOTO: Oleg Tinkov, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Tinkoff Bank, attends a session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), Russia June 7, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov/File Photo

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MOSCOW (Reuters) -Billionaire Oleg Tinkov, whose online bank is Russia's second biggest credit card issuer, pleaded guilty on Friday to filing a false U.S. tax return and agreed to pay $507 million in taxes, interest and penalties, the U.S. Department of Justice said.

He had been accused of concealing $1 billion in assets and income when renouncing his U.S. citizenship in 2013.

Tinkov, whose businesses including Tinkoff Bank are held by his investment company TCS Group, was arrested in London in February 2020 in connection with the indictment, and released on bail as he was fighting acute leukaemia.

"Mr Tinkov is grateful for the opportunity to resolve this case in a humanitarian way and is hopeful that it will allow him to focus his energy on fighting his illness," his lawyers said in a statement.

His sentencing hearing is scheduled for Oct. 29, which is expected to wrap up the case.

A spokesperson for Tinkov said the businessman has enough funds to cover the fines without selling his assets, including shares in TCS.

(Reporting by Anton Kolodyazhnyy and Tatiana VoronovaWriting by Vladimir SoldatkinEditing by Peter Graff)

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