The incredible 446-ft. Savarona (above), the seventh largest yacht in the world, was the site of a dramatic helicopter raid by police off the Mediterranean coast of southwestern Turkey the other day. New York-based property developer Tevfik Arif, a sometime business partner of Donald Trump, is being questioned by Turkish police as a suspected organizer of an international ring of high-priced prostitutes that operated on the yacht, Bloomberg reports. Built by Blohm + Voss in 1931 for an American heiress, the superyacht is owned by the Republic of Turkey and was available for charter at $50,000 per day. The lavishly refurbished yacht features accommodations for 34 guests with 260 tons of polished marble, a swimming pool, turkish bath, 282-foot gold-trimmed grand staircase, movie theater, library and helipad. Celebrities who have stayed aboard her include Prince Charles, the Sultan of Brunei, Nicole Kidman, Sharon Stone, Hugh Grant and Tom Cruise.
In addition to Arif, businessmen from Russia and high-level government officials were taken into custody aboard the Savarona by Turkish military police following a seven-month investigation into an international prostitution ring, Bloomberg reports. The men paid $3,000 to $10,000 per night to have sex at sea with Russian and Ukrainian fashion models, some of whom were underage. 10 Russian and Ukrainian women suspected of prostitution were also detained in the operation. When police arrived at the yacht around midday they found everyone in bed. Arif's lawyer Engin Agyuzlu stated that his client is the victim of a "smear campaign" and will "vigorously defend himself in any court of law." Arif is chairman of Bayrock Group LLC, a property group that partnered with the Trump Organization to build the SoHo Hotel Condominium and a Trump Tower in Florida.
UPDATE at 6:00pm ET on May 16, 2012: Tevfik Arif was acquitted of all charges in April 2011, according to The Guardian.
Gallery: The Superyacht 'Savarona'