Fugitive's Escape from House Arrest
Uss was under house arrest at his residence in Basiglio, on the outskirts of Milan. However, he managed to flee a day after a Milan court approved his transfer to the U.S. to face charges related to shipping oil from Venezuela in violation of sanctions and bank fraud. His electronic tracking tag raised the alarm when he left the house, but police could not locate him upon arrival at the villa.
Treasury's Decree and Frozen Assets
In a statement released Friday, the Treasury approved a decree to freeze assets belonging to Uss in Italy. This includes a minority stake in a private company, his Basiglio villa, and a bank account containing over 160,000 euros.
Uss Claims Charges are Politically Motivated
Uss told Russia's RIA news agency earlier this month that the U.S. charges against him were politically motivated, further complicating the situation.
Italian Government's Response to Escape
Uss's escape has embarrassed the government, with Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni criticizing the initial decision to grant him house arrest. Italy's justice minister has started disciplinary action against the three judges who granted the house arrest, according to two sources with direct knowledge of the matter earlier this week.