Audemars Piguet watches seized in Russian retaliation to Swiss sanctions
Russian agents have seized a trove of Audemars Piguet watches in Moscow in an alleged retaliation for Swiss sanctions banning luxury goods exports, Swiss newspaper NZZ am Sonntag reported, according to a Bloomberg article.
The luxury watches were taken from the company's local premises by special agents from Russia’s FSB, the newspaper said, citing people familiar with a Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs memo.
The report said that Russian agents cited customs offenses as the reason the Audemars Piguet watches were seized. However, Swiss foreign affairs department officials said the move was “most likely an arbitrary repressive measure in response to the sanctions,” the newspaper reported, citing the memo.
Audemars Piguet had not issued a statement on the matter at the time of reporting.
The seized watches by Russian agent comes on the back of Switzerland's matching European Union sanctions, which saw the traditionally neutral state banning the export of luxury goods to Russia earlier this month, in response to the invasion of Ukraine.
A host international brands including L'Oreal, Louis Vouis, H&M, PVH Corp and Unilever have also halted operations in Russian, in a sign of solidarity with Ukraine.
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