Russian ‘Scarface’ oligarch, 56, who sold Harry and Meghan their home has died

The Russian Oligarch who sold Prince Harry and Meghan Markle their Montecito home has died after a brain illness.

Sergey Grishin, who is referred to as the “Scarface Oligarch”, has died in a hospital in Moscow after falling ill.

He is understood to have died due to sepsis, which in turn was caused by “circulatory problems in his brain”.

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Grishin previously sold the Duke and Duchess of Sussex their $14.7million (£12.4million) mansion in California, USA, in 2020.

The 56-year-old passed away on Monday (March 6), however news of his death was only today made public.

The oligarch has previously given reason to believe he may have fraught relations with his native Russia.

During his presidency, Donald Trump was asked for a US passport by Grishin, who said: "I want to be safe.

“I am kind of under fire right now by the criminal world of Russia…by the top government officials of Russia, too.”

He bought the house he sold to the royals, known as the Chateau of Riven Rock, in 2009 – the huge mansion sits on seven-acre grounds and comes complete with a pool, seven bedrooms, a tennis court and guest accommodation.

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His nickname “Scarface” was earned through his ownership of a previous mansion, which was the set for the 1983 Al Pacino movie Scarface.

He earned his fortune through the co-ownership of RosEvroBank and is alleged to be the architect of a $60billion bank fraud stealing from the Central Bank of Russia in the 1990s.

The exact scale of the fraud remains unknown.

He even previously bragged about the theft, calling it, “the largest bank fraud scheme ever”.

In his efforts to obtain a US passport, he used the fraud as an incentive to officials – ultimately without success.

He said he could demonstrate: “How a single person like me can cause the collapse of the Russian banking system”.

He continued: “Many people think that Chechens came up with [the scheme].

“This is not true. I invented it. I stole a lot in Estonia and Russia.

“It was the largest fraud scheme, because no one knew exactly how much money was stolen.”

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