Not content with the Ukraine, Vladimir Putin and his cronies at Gazprom are now making their moves on Wyoming. The Russian leader has encouraged Gazprom and its subsidiaries to purchase oil and gas leases in the vast Bakken oil shale deposits in the western United States and for a period of several years the company, and its top executives, have been purchasing the lucrative leases as well as real estate in South Dakota, Colorado, Wyoming, Texas and New Mexico. Records obtained from the US Department of the Interior indicate that Gazpromavia, TyumenNIIgiprogas, FC Zenit Saint Petersburg and several other branches of the multinational corporation, and Gazprom itself have bought at least 730 leases in those western states and over 116 in the oil and gas field of Pennsylvania and other eastern states containing energy reserves. Records of real estate transactions from the Teton County website where the tony town of Jackson lies show that several executives of the company, including some who are closely associated with Putin himself, have been snapping up view properties and nearby ranches. International ownership of US properties was softened under NAFTA rules in 1994 but limited to member countries primarily in the western hemisphere. Restrictions were lifted during the Bush administration to permit all persons or corporations based in UN member nations not currently under sanction to own real estate, businesses and interests, including strategic resources.