Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich gets apology over Putin claim

Roman Abramovich arriving at court in 2018

Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich has received an apology from a publisher over defamatory allegations.

HarperCollins published a book which included the claim that Mr Abramovich bought London football club Chelsea on the orders of Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.

On Wednesday the company apologised to Mr Abramovich and confirmed it had reached a settlement.

It has amended the book, Putin’s People by UK journalist Catherine Belton.

Published by HarperCollins last year, Putin’s People included an allegation by another Russian billionaire, Sergei Pugachev, that Mr Abramovich had bought the club in 2003 on the orders of Mr Putin.

In a statement, the publisher said Ms Belton’s book “contained some inaccurate information” about Mr Abramovich.

“While the book always included a denial that Mr Abramovich was acting under anybody’s direction when he purchased Chelsea, the new edition will include a more detailed explanation of Mr Abramovich’s motivations for buying the club,” it read.