On September 9, 2016, FSB officers detained Colonel Dmitry Zakharchenko, head of the "T" Directorate of the Main Directorate for Economic Security and Anti-Corruption of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (GUEBiPK). During the searches, more than 8 billion rubles were seized in Russian and foreign currencies. In order to establish the origin of money, the investigation began to check all the operational developments to which Zakharchenko and his subordinates, who were investigating crimes in the fuel and energy complex, had a relationship. And they could not fail to pay attention to the "Alexander Shchukin case" - the Kuzbass coal magnate, the habitue of the list of Forbes, the owner of several mines, car dealerships and a dozen other enterprises.
What connects businessman Shchukin with Colonel Zakharchenko
Shchukin fell into the field of view of subordinates Zakharchenko in the fall of 2015. It was then that a request was made to Interpol asking for assistance in obtaining information on a number of offshore companies (a copy of the request is at the disposal of Novaya, IM) in order to verify the suspicions that appeared in the Interior Ministry's anti-corruption department In tax evasion and the withdrawal of several hundred million euros from Cyprus through the Cyprus offshore.
The request was signed on November 13, 2015 by a close friend of Zakharchenko, Deputy Chief of the GUEBC and Major General Oleg Kalinkin. By September 2016, ten months later, there had been no major progress in the development of the "Shchukin case". This despite the fact that information about the "transfer" of several hundred million euros from Russia to Cyprus were obtained from a reliable source: from the materials of the trial in the Royal Court of London, initiated by Shchukin's relatives.
The fact is that to manage his foreign assets, Alexander Shchukin registered Upminister Trading Limited on the Isle of Man. But in 2005, the Maine tightened control over nominal directors, introduced licensing of companies providing trust, secretarial and registration services, and thus effectively ceased to be an offshore company. Upminister Trading Limited immediately changed the "residence permit", "moving" to Gibraltar.
Operational management of Upminister Trading Limited was carried out by the only daughter Elena Shchukina and the son-in-law of Ildar Uzbekov who invited British businessman Adrian Barford to carry out the current work. Barford offered Shchukin's relatives his Fern Advisors Limited to manage family assets. The proposal was accepted. Fern Advisors Limited began to "transfer" money from the accounts of Upminister Trading Limited ... But soon Elena and Ildar suspected Adrian of stealing several million euros and appealed to the Royal Court, accusing the manager of misappropriation of funds that were planned to be invested in the UK.
Adrian Barford did not say a word. Here are a few quotes from his testimony given under oath (copies of the materials of the trial process are available to Novaya Gazeta).
"Ildar Uzbekov committed to the transfer of the amount of 250 to 400 million euros of capital under the management of the company Fern for the next two years, taking into account the transfer of 1 billion euros under the management of Fern for the next five years ..."
Clarified Barford and the source of the money, telling the court that the funds were accumulated "... as a result of the work in Siberia, Mr. Schukin. They wanted to withdraw this capital from Russia. " Barford said that he knows at least about 150 million euros on the accounts of Cypriot offshore companies controlled by Shchukin. The businessman and company names sounded.
Based on the materials of the court proceedings at the Royal Court of London, the subordinates of Colonel Zakharchenko from the T department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs GUIBiPK established, for example, that "in 2011-2012, OJSC Polusohinskaya Mine, in order to avoid paying taxes, paid dividends to Bryankee Holding Limited (Cyprus) in the amount of 3.3 billion rubles "(quotation from the inquiry GUEBiPK in Interpol. - IM). The director and Bryankee Holding Limited and OJSC Polesukhinsky Mine were Alexander Shchukin.
I repeat, despite such obvious facts, which give serious grounds for suspicion of a coal tycoon, the "Shchukin case" did not move. Operatives of the M department of the FSB who were looking for sources of origin of "Zakharchenko's billion" could not pass by such a promising version and in early November 2016 went to the Kemerovo region.
Dossier on the coal magnate
The landing of Moscow colleagues alarmed the Kuzbass security officers. Apparently, fearing accusations of inaction, the Muscovites poured a heap of information on Shchukin: they say that we have been "working out" for a long time. In confirmation, several episodes from the life of Shchukin and his high-ranking acquaintances, or patrons, have resulted.
The dossier on Shchukin really turned out to be plump. Here are just a few episodes.
In April 2013, the local department of the TFR initiated a criminal case under part 2 of Article 201 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (abuse of office) and sent Boris Yakubuk, the owner of OOO Zenkovsky mine management, to the SIZO, which included several coal mines. From the detention center Yakubuk left in two months, at the end of June. And only after he signed all the documents on the sale of his assets, which eventually came under the management of a company controlled by Shchukin.
In the same 2013, under the same scheme, Shchukin controlled 100% of Gramoteinskaya mine owned by the British private equity fund Lehram Capital Investments Ltd. The British director appointed a Kazakh citizen, Igor Rudyk, a 28-year-old specialist who received an education in London and made a managerial career there. For several months of work, Rudyk was able to resume the work of the enterprise, begin shipping coal, but was soon detained and placed in a police detention center. He was accused of violating migration legislation because of an ostensibly overdue passport.
After spending a couple of weeks behind bars, under threat of sentence and imprisonment to the colony for several years, hired manager Rudyk, having no right without the shareholders' consent to such actions, signed all documents on the transfer of shares of Gramoteinskaya mine to a company controlled by Shchukin. "Siberian prisons are not the most wonderful place, I was not in the best state of mind and agreed," the British newspaper Guardian quoted the businessman as Rudyk had already left Russia.
In mid-2016, an attempt was made to add two more coal mining enterprises in the Kemerovo Region: Shakhtoupravlenie Taldinskoye-Kyrgayskoe (ShTK) and Shakhtoupravlenie (Taldinskoye-Yuzhnoye). In this case, a scheme was devised for presenting for payment of doubtful bills for a total of more than 1.5 billion rubles and initiating a bankruptcy procedure, which, in turn, was planned to be carried out by hands of controlled arbitration managers.
"But the information is quite fresh," Kuzbass chekists told their colleagues in Moscow. - In July, under the control of a businessman, JSC "Razrez Inskaya" was transferred. And the procedure for changing the owner of the mine has all the signs of a crime committed by an organized group.
- The statement about the crime from the former owner of shares was received back in July, on the calendar - November ... - Muscovites were surprised. "What did you pull the tires for four months?"
Kuzbass chekists have dismissed with their hands, they say, high-ranking officials of the regional administration and the leadership of the Kemerovo management of the TFR were involved in the case.
Officers of the FSB who flew to Kemerovo to check information about Shchukin on the "Zakharchenko case", loud names only provoked. A cipher went to Moscow with details of Shchukin's receipt of a 51% stake in Razrez Inskaya. And already on the night of November 12 to November 13, 2016, employees of the 5th Directorate of the Investigative Committee of Russia came to Novosibirsk from Kemerovo accompanied by operatives and fighters of the special division of the FSB. The searches and seizures were carried out in dozens of offices of the Kemerovo administration of the SKR, the administration of the region, offices of commercial enterprises, in apartments and country mansions of suspects.
Not only businessman Alexander Shchukin, initially interested in Muscovites in connection with the "Zakharchenko's billions business", was detained and taken to Novosibirsk, but also the head of the local department of the SRK, general Sergey Kalinkin, vice-governors Alexander Danilchenko and Alexei Ivanov, and several other characters who occupy far Not the last place in the Kuzbass hierarchy of power and business.
The CCD promptly spread information that detainees are charged with extortion (Part 3, Article 163 of the Criminal Code) that high-ranking officials and security officials are suspected of being "convicted" by the owner of a 51% stake in Razrez Inskaya JSC with a market value of at least 1 Billion rubles to transfer the asset "trusted businessman" Alexander Schukin.
The estate of the eternal governor
At the Kemerovo airport, which bears the name of the legendary cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, I was surprised to learn that the world's first spacewalk was carried out on the initiative of Governor of the Kemerovo region Aman Tuleyev. Only after reading the inscription under the photos of the cosmonaut several times, I realized that Tuleyev initiated not Leonov's exit into space, but the airport's name as a fellow countryman.
In Kemerovo there are dozens of reminders of Tuleyev. The monument "Memory to the miners of Kuzbass" (the creation of Ernst Neizvestny), it turns out, was cast and installed at the initiative of Tuleyev. The sculpture "Angel" is also his initiative. Even courtyards in the regional center are repaired on the personal initiative of the governor. Residents of Kuzbass have long been accustomed to: nothing is done in the region without the initiative of Aman Tuleyev, who has headed the region for nearly 20 years, that the governor's opinion is always a truth that is not subject to discussion, let alone criticism and doubt.
After the detention of the vice-governors and the head of the Kemerovo administration of the SKR, Kuzbass froze in anticipation: will the domino effect work, will not new arrests and landings follow? Will the vertical of power and business built in the region be shaken? But Aman Tuleyev reassured the residents of the region, expressing their attitude to the criminal case. And he expressed quite unambiguously, albeit nervously: they say his deputies were framed, he does not believe in their guilt.
"I consider the accusations against them to be absurd," Tuleyev said at an urgently convened press conference and added that he did not doubt the integrity and honesty of the detained vice governors and the head of the regional department of the Arts. - They are statesmen.
Many people in Kuzbass sighed with relief. Talks have begun that the arrests are a mistake that will soon be corrected.
But it's been six months already, and it seems that they are not going to release the criminal case on brakes. Moreover, from Novosibirsk they leak and report to Kuzbass that all the defendants actively cooperate with the investigation and provide the personnel of the TFR with more and more information, from which the picture of close splicing in the Kemerovo region of power, business, siloviki and criminals may well be lined up.
Tuleyev's nervousness became clear in November of last year when you read the record of the first interrogation of businessman Alexander Shchukin, during which he told the investigator frankly that in July 2016 "Governor of the Kemerovo region Aman Tuleev called and offered to help JSC" Razrez Inskaya "by paying off debts In the amount of 70 million rubles for the payment of wages to the mine workers in connection with the need to relieve social tension in the Kemerovo region on the eve of the elections to the State Duma and celebrating The Day of the Miner. I asked Aman Tuleyev how in the case of assistance I will receive back my money <...>, to which he replied that I will get my money back in the form of acquiring a 51% stake in AO Razrez Inskoy. I agreed "(a quote from the interrogation protocol, a copy of which is available to Novaya Gazeta).
Arrested and immediately fired from the TFR, General Sergei Kalinkin, too, did not hide the underlying reason for his involvement in the change of the owner of the Inca Inca JSC. On November 16, 2016, during the court session on the election of a preventive measure, he said that the mine had not been paid a salary to the miners since December 2015, and they threatened to cut off the Transsib:
- The governor called me (Tuleyev - IM) and said: Sergei Nikolayevich, figure it out.
And the general figured it out. July 11, 2016 at the direction of Kalinkin against Anton Tsygankov, on which 51% of shares of Razrez Inskoy were registered, a criminal case was instituted on abuse of authority (Part 2, Article 201 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). Tsygankov was detained and taken to a temporary detention center. The next day on a "date" to the detainee came the vice-governors Ivanov and Danilchenko and persuaded him to rewrite the shares on Shchukin. Representative Shchukin demanded that the change of ownership of shares was formalized by the alienation of shares through donation, rather than purchase and sale. When Tsygankov signed all the documents, he was immediately released from the IVS, and the criminal case was closed.
Explaining his "official zeal", which goes beyond the bounds of the law, solely by the request of the governor, General Kalinkin seems to be cunning. Because the same businessman Shchukin in one of the interrogations wrote in the "appearance with a guilty" that "stimulated" the head of the regional department of the TFR with a car BMW X5, which he handed over to him in 2014, having registered the relative's wife, General Nadezhda Gobruseva. According to Shchukin, this was the second "bey", transferred to the disposal of the general. Exactly the same BMW X5 Schukin gave Kalinkin a few years earlier.
Conspiracy of silence
For three days I spent in the Kemerovo region, not one law enforcement officer, no journalist, no activist, even considering himself an oppositionist, did not want to talk under the dictaphone. Everyone had one argument: "We live here". What can I say about the residents of Kuzbass, even if Boris Yakubuk, the owner of Zenkovsky Mine Management LLC, who spent several months in a prison cell and freed himself, moved to Moscow refused to meet with him:
"Do not get me wrong," Yakubuk said over the phone. - I'm now trying to get back what belonged to me. And communication with the press can prevent me.
Boris Yakubuka can understand: most likely, he is afraid of frankness, fearing to repeat the fate of Eugene Lazarevich. Lazarevich was appointed external manager of the mine "Koksovaya-2", once owned by Yakubuk, and now controlled by Shchukin. In December 2016, Lazarevich was summoned for interrogation in the TFR. But on December 12, the external manager of Koksovoy-2 disappeared. The salon of a businessman soon discovered was sprinkled with red pepper.
In fact, it is possible to explain the Kemerovo "conspiracy of silence" in the following way: the kuzbass people still do not believe that the criminal case against the vice governors, the general of the SKR, the businessman and a number of other figurants will not fall apart.
Among law enforcement officers, there is also no consensus on which scenario to investigate. Limit an episode with the seizure of JSC "Razrez Inskoy", re-qualifying the actions of the defendants under the softer articles of the Criminal Code, for example, abuse of office and arbitrariness. Or, "float" all the operational materials collected in relation to businessman Alexander Shchukin and his senior patrons, including an episode related to "the case of Colonel Zakharchenko."
Moreover, even the presence of Shchukin under house arrest, as it may be supposed, does not prevent his companions and relatives from withdrawing capital from Russia. So, for the first quarter of 2017, the Shchukinsky OJSC Polusokhinskaya Mine shifted 1.1 billion rubles to the Cyprus offshore as a dividend, PTK-Coal LLC, designed for Shchukin's wife, sent Cyprus for the same first three months of 2017 , 3 billion rubles. Another 2.5 billion went to Cyprus from Aktiv-Capital, a Shchukin-controlled joint-stock company.
- The decision on Shchukin and his accomplices will be made in Moscow. And this will be a political decision, "one of my interlocutors, who took part in the operational-search activities in November 2016, admitted frankly.