Blow to Poroshenko: Lozhkin, Gontareva, Stetsenko, Filatov served with charges over billion-worth fraud with Kurchenko

16:35, 28 March 2019
Politics
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Photo from UNIAN

Papers with charges over laundering billions of hryvnias of former President Viktor Yanukovych's "family" have been served by the Prosecutor General's Office (PGO) of Ukraine to Ukrainian oligarch Serhiy Kurchenko's accomplices: former head of the Presidential Administration Boris Lozhkin, former Governor of the National Bank of Ukraine Valeriya Gontareva, co-owner of the ICU investment company Kostiantyn Stetsenko, Deputy Head of Presidential Administration Oleksiy Filatov, and others.

In total, 98 persons were served with charge papers, including 12 senior officials of ministries and departments, as well as the National Bank and six heads of regional state administrations in Ukraine, the Ukrainian news outlet Vesti reported with reference to the U.S.-based Russian-language website Forum Daily.

"Judging from the documents available to the editorial office, the Prosecutor General's Office of Ukraine has finally completed the investigation of the crimes of fugitive oligarch Serhiy Kurchenko. The member of the Yanukovych's 'family' is accused of really huge theft: in particular, by forgery of documents and various financial frauds at NJSC Naftogaz of Ukraine, Ukrnafta and Ukrgazvydobuvannia, he stole liquefied gas and money worth over UAH 2 billion (US$250 million at the then forex rate at about UAH 8 to the dollar), as well as from Naftogaz itself, according to the investigation, Kurchenko siphoned UAH 5 billion (US$625 million)," the report said.

"Notorious ex-Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources Mykola Zlochevskiy has also become a suspect of the investigation into the financial frauds of Yanukovych's 'family' and the allies of incumbent President Petro Poroshenko. The prosecutor's office charged him with ' assisting in a criminal organization and legalization (laundering) of funds in the amount of $36 million' while implementing the purchase and sale of the Kherson oil transshipment, as well as while handling financial transactions involving the companies of Burisma Holdings Limited (whose members of the board of directors are Hunter Biden, the son of ex-U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, ex-President of Poland Alexander Kwasniewski, Devon Archer, the stepson of ex-U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, etc.), Wirelogic Technology A.S., Digitex Organization LLP, and Rosemont Seneca Bohai LLC, in which Hunter Biden is the beneficiary," the journalists of the U.S. website said.

"However, even more shocking are financial abuses of which the PGO investigators suspect people from the inner circle of incumbent President Poroshenko," the report says.

According to the publication, "as part of the investigation into the crimes of the 'family,' the PGO has today announced suspicions of assisting in illegal laundering and legalization (both before and after the Revolution of Dignity, which happened late in 2013 – early in 2014) of Kurchenko's assets and funds worth billions of hryvnias to former head of the Presidential Administration Boris Lozhkin, former Governor of the National Bank of Ukraine Valeriya Gontareva, Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration Oleksiy Filatov (he is said to be an unofficial supervisor of the judicial vertical in the country). Co-owners of the ICU investment company Konstantin Stetsenko (ICU is an investment company that manages Poroshenko's assets) are also involved in the case."

"In particular, Gontareva, together with ICU top manager Konstantin Stetsenko, is charged with 'assisting in a criminal organization and assisting in the illegal seizure of another's property – monetary funds of PJSC Agrarian Fund worth UAH 2.069 billion through the conclusion by JSC Brokbusinessbank of fake contracts of sale and purchase of government domestic loan bonds with the Agrarian Fund under direct repurchase agreements with the National Bank of Ukraine," Forum Daily reported.

The journalists also added that "former head of the Presidential Administration Boris Lozhkin and Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration Oleksiy Filatov are suspected of assisting in the criminal organization and legalizing (laundering) money worth over $440 million obtained through the purchase and sale of property and corporate rights of the Ukrainian Media Holding (UMH) group of companies whose co-owner at the time of these operations was incumbent President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko."

"As of today, 98 persons, including 12 senior officials of ministries and departments, as well as the National Bank and six heads of regional state administrations, have been served with charge papers within the framework of investigations into the crimes of former President Viktor Yanukovych's allies," Forum Daily wrote.

UNIAN is currently trying to reach the PGO and the defendants for an official comment.

In particular, Deputy Head of the PGO's Department of International Legal Cooperation, Head of the Criminal Procedural Management Department Kostiantyn Kulyk has confirmed the report about charges against the top officials.

"Yes, I confirm that such charges have been brought," Kulyk told UNIAN.

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