A well-known Ural expert on black PR Alexander Ustinov, who is considered the founder of a number of politically oriented media and Telegram channels, was detained in Yekaterinburg while receiving money. The reason was the criminal cases of fraud and libel. According to the version of the investigation, Mr. Ustinov, together with a group of assistants, was engaged in disseminating invalid information about politicians and businessmen, after which he offered to remove this information from controlled sites for money.
Information about the detention of Alexander Ustinov in Yekaterinburg during a special operation of the Ural security officials appeared on Thursday evening. According to the Evening Vedomosti publication, the detention was carried out as part of the investigation of a criminal case on fraud (Article 159 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation), initiated at the request of representatives of the Ventprom plant (Artyomovsky, Sverdlovsk region). Allegedly, plant employees paid 6 million rubles. for the fact that they are not spread slanderous information. Officially, it was not possible to confirm the information about the detention in law enforcement. It was confirmed by interlocutors “b”, familiar with the situation.
Alexander Ustinov is known in Yekaterinburg as the founder of the Telegram channels - Ustinov Trollit and the DIP Governor (DIP - Department of Information Policy of the Sverdlovsk Region). Previously, one of the channels was called “Thoughts of Tungusov”. Vladimir Tungusov - the former First Deputy Governor of the Sverdlovsk Region and the head of his administration. The governor reduced him after a protracted conflict two days before the elections to the Duma of Yekaterinburg. There are 70.6 thousand subscribers on the Ustinov Troll channel, 1.7 thousand subscribers on the “DIP Governor”. Recent posts speak about the effectiveness of Vladimir Tungusov as a manager and political manager. Earlier, Alexander Ustinov owned the Ustav.com portal, which was created to publish defamatory information about Governor Yevgeniya Kuyvashev. Now, according to local media, the portal is sold.
According to investigators, Alexander Ustinov, together with a group of assistants, could be involved in black PR related to prominent political figures, businessmen and lawyers in the region.
The scheme of work, according to security officials, was the following: incriminating materials were created against specific people, which were then actively promoted on the sites under their control - Rupolit.net, Ustav.net, Kompromatural.ru and others. After that, inaccurate information through Ukrainian partners (owners of the article sites “Tarasova Pravda” and “Tarasov.Info”) was replicated in a whole network of sites under control. Thanks to good SEO optimization, the slanderous information got into the search engines and allegedly for the removal of this information the members of the group requested "compensation".
Among those about whom false information was actively disseminated, are the heads of JSC AMZ Ventprom, the management of the local VTB, RCC, the governor Yevgeny Kuyvashev.
According to “Kommersant”, some victims sought not only blocking of inaccurate information (as in 2018, by a court decision, access to Rupolit.net was blocked), but even the initiation of criminal cases on libel (Article 128.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). So, Mr. Ustinov became the person involved in the criminal case on the application of the honorary lawyer of Russia Yaroslav Zagoruiko. According to the investigation, the publication, controlled by Mr. Ustinov, published data from the lawyer’s personal life and slandered him, accusing him of violating the law. According to Kommersant, so far no charges have been brought against Mr. Ustinov in this case - he missed visits to the investigator.
Contact the lawyers of Alexander Ustinov failed.
The source told the details of the criminal case in which the political consultant Ustinov was detained
Znak.com became aware of the details of the criminal case, in connection with which the Ural political strategist Alexander Ustinov was arrested today. According to available information, Ustinov is suspected of having created a criminal group, whose members spread false information about well-known politicians and businessmen, and then extorted money from them (the amount allegedly ranged from 5 to 25 thousand dollars), often using fraudulent schemes. “In their work, the criminal group headed by [Alexander] Ustinov used a number of specially created Internet portals and channels in Telegram: rupolit.net, ustav.net, kompromatural.ru, compromat.ws, glavk.info,“ Ustinov trolls ”and “News Cart”, ”a law enforcement source told Znak.com.
According to security officials, this group includes several people: Alexander Ustinov himself, his assistant Ivan Bessenny, Anton Stark (programmer), Alexander Kozlov (is a citizen of Ukraine, known under the pseudonym "Taras"), Alexey Bocharov (the domain owner is kompromatural.ru ) and other persons who registered various portals connected with Ustinov.
Many of the Internet portals used by the group were registered by fake people and not in the territory of the Russian Federation. A number of sites were registered in Ukraine, Canada and the United States, the source said.
According to law enforcement officers, PJSC "Bank VTB" Andrei Kostin, head of Rosneft Igor Sechin, heads of AMZ VENTPROM JSC Alexander Kolmakov and Oleg Gorshkov, general director of United Grain Company Mikhail Kiyko, head of the Russian Copper Company Igor Altushkin, heads of the Federal Tax Service of Russia Mikhail Mishustin, FAS Russia Igor Artemyev, ex-presidential adviser Anton Ustinov, ex-head of the Investigation Department Yuri Alekseev, governor of the Sverdlovsk region Yevgeny Kuyvashev, head of Chelyabins th region Boris Dubrovsky, as well as other officials and businessmen.
The reason for the initiation of the case and the subsequent arrest was a statement to the police, which was written by the management of AMZ WENTPROM. Businessmen claimed that the representatives of the Ustinov group were blackmailing them, and as a result, they acquired 6 million rubles by extortion. The case was initiated under articles 159 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “Fraud” and article 163 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “Extortion”.
“This is an unprecedented case, this is not real in Russia yet. Detentions will continue. This story will not be limited to the initiation of a criminal case, ”an informed source asserts.
The press service of the State Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia in the Sverdlovsk region currently refrains from making any comments. Alexander Ustinov himself also failed to get a comment - the political consultant’s phone is not responding.
Recall, for a long time Ustinov was the owner of the charter portal, which he later sold to the Legislative Assembly deputy Vyacheslav Wegner. For a long time, it is believed, Ustinov worked in the interests of the former vice-governor of the Sverdlovsk region, Vladimir Tungusov.
According to unconfirmed information, Ustinov would be detained today at the Hyatt Hotel in Yekaterinburg when transferring money.