A Russian billionaire who sold Prince Harry and Meghan their Montecito home in the United States for $14 million has died in Moscow. Sergey Grishin, 56, often known as the "Scarface Oligarch," is believed to have died suddenly on Monday at a hospital in Moscow following a serious illness.
However, Grishin's death is shrouded in mystery given that he is the latest among prominent Russian oligarchs and Russian President Vladimir Putin's allies to have died suddenly in recent months. Moreover, Greshin was also among those who slammed Putin and requested a US passport as he felt he felt he was not safe in Russia.
According to The US Sun, citing local media reports, Grishin suffered "circulatory disorders in his brain" that caused sepsis leading to his death. He had earlier requested a US passport from then-President Donald Trump after criticizing Putin's regime, saying: "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."
However, he spent his final years in Russia after selling his American property to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. The Chateau of Riven Rock estate, which features a seven-acre property, a pool, a tennis court, guest rooms, and a gorgeous main house, was purchased by Grishin in 2009.
The royal couple then relocated from Los Angeles to the nearby Santa Barbara community of Montecito, which is home to celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres.
He was given the moniker Scarface because he had previously owned the mansion where the 1983 Al Pacino picture was filmed, according to the outlet.
The Russian oligarch was also a former co-owner of RosEvroBank and once boasted that a $60 billion scam he committed in the 1990s brought down the whole Russian banking sector.
Grishin described it as "the largest bank fraud scheme ever," involving a $60 billion theft from the Russian Central Bank. He used invisible ink on checks for one of his other con games. Also, he was charged with making severe threats to women in his life.
One ex-lover, Ekaterina Loginova, overheard him making threats against his separated wife, Anna Fedoseeva, during their contentious divorce, the outlet reported.
News of Grishin's death comes after the christening of Harry and Meghan's baby Lilibet in a private ceremony at their California home last week.
On March 3, about 25 people gathered to commemorate the occasion which members of the Royal Family were invited but declined to attend, the PEOPLE reported.