Corporation of Development CEO suspected of embezzlement fires interim director

Corporation of Development CEO suspected of embezzlement fires interim director
Sergey Maslov Photo: Vasily Shaposhnikov / Kommersant

Sergey Maslov has canceled the personnel decision of the shareholders. Now, his resignation could turn into a protracted corporate dispute.

Corporation of Development CEO Sergey Maslov, who had recently been freed from prison, ordered to dismiss Sergey Novitsky from the post of the Interim Director of the company, to which he had been appointed by the shareholders. As Znak.com reports, having appeared in the Moscow office of the corporation, Maslov decided that Novitsky had to return to his duties as deputy head with his old salary. Furthermore, Maslov revoked Novitsky’s right to sign deals with banks and official agencies and sent letters to the shareholders, informing them that he would continue working as Director General.

As a reminder, head of the Corporation of Development Sergey Maslov and his deputy Vladimir Karamanov were arrested in October 2016 on suspicion of embezzling corporate money. Investigators believe that in 2014, the defendants misappropriated more than 1 billion rubles from the accounts of the commercial bank Narodny Kredit. After the Central Bank had revoked the license of the credit institution, it turned out that the money from the corporation accounts disappeared. Its top managers entered into a criminal conspiracy with the bank's leadership. The day before revocation of the license transferred the bank funds to the accounts of shell companies and then stole them. Once Maslov and his alleged accomplices were detained, the court seized the property of the head of corporation — real estate in Arkhangelsk worth more than $ 100 million, an apartment in Moscow, and a country house in the Moscow region.

However, on November 29, the Leninsky District Court in Rostov-on-Don chose not to extend the period of detention for the head of the company. At the same time, the detainee's lawyer said that Maslov had been formally charged only with embezzlement of 65 million rubles.

Still, while the CEO was in custody, on November 9, the supervisory board of the corporation unanimously elected Sergey Novitsky as the company’s Interim Director. First thing he increased his salary up to 1 million rubles a month (despite the instructions of shareholders to refrain from uncoordinated decisions).

Upon learning that Maslov returned to work and dismissed Novitsky, the shareholders (among them — the governments of Khanty-Mansi Autonomous region, Yamal, Tyumen Region, Sverdlovsk region, and the Ural embassy) held an extraordinary meeting and decided to suspend Sergey Maslov once again and to re-appoint Sergey Novitsky to the post of Interim General Director .

However, according to Znak.com, by that point Maslov had already taken a sick leave. The fact is that the manager has the right to seek a review of the decision on his dismissal if he did not attend the meeting due to illness or was not notified. Sergey Malov’s resignation is now likely to turn into a protracted corporate dispute.

According to a source, by assigning Novitsky the Interim Director of the company, the owners failed to comply with the necessary legal procedure, which is removing Acting Director General Sergey Maslov from his office.

It is worth noting that immediately after Maslov’s arrival in the Corporation of Development in 2013, Sergey Novitsky became a senior manager in the company. He was then considered Maslov’s man. Previously, he worked in Gazprom structures and was Deputy Director General of its subsidiary, Yamalgazinvest JSC.

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