- The DOJ and FBI are trying to seize the former Armenian finance minister’s mega-mansion.
- The Holmby Hills home is listed for $63.5 million while prosecutors work with realtors on the sale.
- Gagik Khachatryan was criminally charged with bribery in Armenia, and faces charges in the US.
Los Angeles realtors are working with the Department of Justice and the FBI to try to sell a mega-mansion that belonged to an Armenian politician facing criminal corruption charges in his home country.
The 30,000-square-foot palace is located in the swanky Holmby Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles just a few doors down from Hugh Hefner’s Playboy mansion. The home, listed for $63.5 million, belonged to former Armenian finance minister Gagik Khachatryan.
Known by the DOJ as the “super minister” in Armenia because of his political power and responsibilities while in office, Khachatryan served as the Chairman of the State Revenue Committee of the Republic of Armenia between 2008 to 2014 and as the Minister of Finance between 2014 to 2016.
Federal prosecutors allege that Armenian businessman Sedrak Arustamyan paid Khachatryan over $20 million in bribes for special tax relief for his businesses and that the money was used to purchase the home in 2011. Armenian prosecutors discovered millions in unpaid taxes after Khachatryan left office in 2016.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the DOJ alleged in a court filing that Khachatryan purchased the house for $14.4 million using the illicit cash, and that he and his sons had formed entities and phony loans to “to receive, disguise and conceal illegal bribe payments.”
Khachatryan and his sons, who the DOJ allege partook in the bribery, were criminally charged with receiving bribes in Armenia in 2019, while charges against Arustamyan are pending.
In the DOJ’s filing, prosecutors wrote that Khachatryan’s sons sought to raise their kids in Los Angeles at the home. After an investigation into the family came to light in Armenia in 2016, the sons fled the country.
With 11 bedrooms and 27 bathrooms, the mansion went on the market on April 7. Real estate brokerage Hilton & Hyland is trying to sell the house as federal prosecutors move to seize the property.
“I’ve been told by the FBI that I can continue to do showings,” realtor Richard Maslan told The Los Angeles Times. “If we receive an offer and both the seller and the Justice Department agree on a sale price, we can still sell it.”