Watch > Episode > Bill Browder - Freezing Order: Russian Money Laundering, Murder & Surviving Vladimir Putin's Wrath

Bill Browder - Freezing Order: Russian Money Laundering, Murder & Surviving Vladimir Putin's Wrath

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Vladimir Putin's Number 1 Enemy

Here at London Real our range of guests always keeps me on my toes. It’s something I actively seek, guests with incredible life stories, controversial pasts, important messages to convey and life changing solutions to everyday problems. I love speaking to people who have been there and done it, and bring a new perspective to an old problem. All of this is why I love my job so much and why I get so excited about talking to such a broad range of personalities.

Which is also why I’m thoroughly looking forward to welcoming back a very special guest to the London Real studios. Bill Browder is an author and former hedge fund manager turned political activist who has a life story akin to a 1960s spy novel, but with very modern and very real consequences.

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Bill burst into the public consciousness and made headlines around the globe after the now infamous sit down between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin in Finland, back in 2018. As discussions between the pair turned to the Russians who may have interfered in the 2016 US Presidential election, Putin was quick to suggest that US authorities could question the suspects on the condition that Russian representatives could speak with Bill Browder in regard to a long running saga that is at the beating heart of this story.

It all began back in the early 90s and a period of mass privatisation in Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union. As co-founder of Hermitage Capital Management, Bill began putting together a huge portfolio that led to him becoming the biggest investor in the Russian economy totalling over $1 billion. However, in 1998 Russia defaulted on its domestic debts which led to the currency devaluing by 75%.

Bill was facing a very harsh reality, as $900 million of clients’ money disappeared down the drain. Feeling broken and ashamed Bill set about getting to the bottom of the problem. In Russia at that time, everything and everyone it seemed had a price. And, as Bill uncovered, there was a far reaching scandal taking place in the country, as companies led by oligarchs were stealing money out the back door.

Bill began putting together detailed analysis of how these companies were syphoning money and where exactly it was going. At that time his exposés became valuable information for one man in particular, Vladimir Putin. Early into his Presidential reign, Putin was attempting to wrestle power back from these oligarchs and Bill’s research was proving significant.

If something seems too good to be true, it probably is and with such a tempestuous ego as Putin’s at the helm, it wasn’t long before Bill found himself caught in the crosshairs. Putin was using the threat of incarceration to bring the oligarchs to the table. By demanding a cut of the profits, Putin became the “richest man in the world” and in doing so set in motion a collision course with Bill Browder that continues to this day.

It is a remarkable story that involves the death of Bill’s lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, something which strengthened Bill’s resolve further and increased his activism. Flanked by bodyguards,Bill himself was chased across Europe, constantly looking over his shoulder. He was arrested in Madrid, survived a honey trap in Monaco, and has found himself exercising caution on a daily basis.

Of course, this barely scratches the surface of what is an ongoing story and as 2022 has shone an even brighter spotlight on the life and times of Vladimir Putin, few can claim to have a more unique perspective on what makes this man tick. Bill has often described himself in the past as Putin’s number one foreign enemy.

“I bring a personal perspective of what it’s like to have a personal conflict with Putin for the past 13 years and I know how he behaves. He never negotiates, he never shows any weakness, and he never compromises.”

Vladimir Putin might be otherwise engaged right now, but have no doubt, Bill remains on his to do list. Bill’s story is a truly remarkable one, more like a work of fiction and his latest book, Freezing Order is an incredible read that is at times quite terrifying.

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I’m really looking forward to this one so make sure you join us for today’s episode. Bill’s a fantastic raconteur, with a barely believable and ever evolving story that brings an insight to the inner workings of Putin’s world that very few can make reference to.

Download clips

A number of clips from this exclusive interview are now available to download, share and repost. Spread the word: grab these clips today!

  1. Vladimir Putin wants me dead
  2. Putin needs to be the scariest guy around
  3. Putin is a full on psychopathic killer
  4. Is Putin the richest man in the world?
  5. Will Putin use nuclear weapons?
  6. What is The Magnitsky Act?
  7. The Magnitsky Act creates terrible consequences for bad guys
  8. Does Bill Browder miss being an investor?
  9. The prisoner exchange that nearly happened
  10. The honeypot trap
  11. What’s next for Bill Browder?

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