Kings of the state order and the Moldavian scheme
The IC is investigating the involvement of former Interior Ministry colonel Dmitry Zakharchenko in the withdrawal of money from Russia under the Moldovan “Moldavian Landromat” scheme, say three people familiar with the investigation of the source of RBC. According to investigators, the withdrawal of at least $ 250 million from Russia to Moldovan banks and then to Switzerland was carried out in the interests of the former co-owners of the contractor of the Russian Railways group “1520”.
The investigation is checking the role in this scheme of the leader of the opposition “Our Party” in Moldova and the ex-mayor of the second largest city of Moldova, Balti Renato Usatii, while he is a witness, RBC sources said. According to investigators, he “accompanied the process in the interests of the beneficiaries of the 1520 group,” said one source.
The beneficiaries of the 1520 group are accused of giving a bribe (at least 2 billion rubles) to the former colonel of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs for Economic Security and Combating Corruption, where he served as the head of the T department. The investigation believes that Zakharchenko actually acted as the head of the group’s security service. In October 2018, the former co-owner of “1520” Valery Markelov was detained, and in March, another co-owner of the company Boris Usherovich was arrested in absentia.
According to the investigation, sources say RBC, the beneficiaries of "1520" withdrew money from Russia to Moldova
"1520" - a company engaged in the design and construction of railways, a major contractor of Russian Railways. In 2018, the company topped the Forbes list of “government procurement kings”, receiving RUB 218.2 billion from the monopolist.
“1520” was the largest business structure that used the services of Colonel Zakharchenko, say RBC interlocutors.
How the Moldovan scheme worked
Two sources familiar with the investigation told RBC that the Moldovan politician and businessman Renato Usatii, who worked closely with the owners of 1520, introduced Usherovic to the former leader of the Democratic Party of Moldova, one of the country's richest businessmen, Vladimir Plahotniuc.