Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska is reportedly suing the U.S. over the sanctions placed on his businesses, and will launch a “$600,000 prize fund” for journalists to dig up why we was sanctioned. According to The Financial Times, the prize fund project will be launched under the suspicion that “domestic political factors” influenced the U.S. decision to sanction Deripaska. In an interview with the newspaper, the aluminum oligarch blamed Congress for the crippling sanctions against him. “Congress wants more blood... [but] Congress has no idea what is going on in Russia, or anywhere in the world,” Deripaska said. “There are no facts, no grounds, just filthy lies.” He continued, claiming Congress was “misinformed,” had a “vendetta,” and was revenge-driven. “It was the wrong impression that hurting private business in Russia would solve some problem... it is completely the opposite,” he said.
Deripaska—along with six other businessmen—were sanctioned most heavily by the U.S. after Russia invaded Crimea in 2014 and the 2016 chemical attack against Russian spy Sergei Skripal in the U.K. In January, Deripaska struck a deal with U.S. officials to have sanctions lifted on one of his companies—which sparked outrage among lawmakers.