Vladmir Putin. (Washington Post illustration; Photograph by Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images)

MONACO — The apartment hangs over the blue waters of the Mediterranean beneath the Monte Carlo casino of James Bond legend. In the harbor below, royals, moguls and oligarchs float by in iceberg-size yachts.

There is little about the humble background of Svetlana Krivonogikh to indicate that she had the means to acquire property overlooking this playground for the world’s elite. The Russian woman reportedly grew up in a crowded communal apartment in St. Petersburg, and held jobs that included cleaning a neighborhood shop.

But previously undisclosed financial records combined with local tax documents show that Krivonogikh, 46, became the owner of the apartment in Monaco through an offshore company created just weeks after she gave birth to a girl. The child was born at a time when, according to a Russian media report last year, she was in a…

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