Ex-mayor of Khabarovsk has 6 houses in US worth more than $6mn
Alexander Sokolov either already has a residence permit in the United States, or has applied for it.
Former Mayor of Khabarovsk Alexander Sokolov, who governed the city for 18 years, has been busted on corruption charges. The Anti-Corruption Foundation has published a large investigation, in which he showed how the mayor himself and his entourage participated in schemes that allowed them to obtain municipal property, including land and shopping centers.
According to the foundation, apart from Sokolov, the corruption scheme related to the unitary enterprise Upravlenie Investitsionnykh Programm Goroda Khabarovska (Khabarovsk Investment Programs Management) also invoved Deputy Mayor Valery Lebeda and his relatives, as well as entrepreneur and businessman Vladimir Kolesnikov.
Once this group captured 8 sites with a total area of 3 hectares located in the center of a nature reserve. In areas designated for public use – such as the construction of hotels, children's camps, and health resorts – there is now a private villa community in which the ex-mayor, other officials, and their relatives live.
In addition, according to the Anti-Corruption Foundation, Alexander Sokolov, his wife Leonora, and their children, Elena and Aleksey, owned six homes totaling more than $6 million in the United States. Five of them are in California, and one more in Washington State. It is reported that this property was purchased from 2004 to 2018.
Participant in the investigation suggested that Alexander Sokolov has a residence permit in the United States or has been trying to get one. For this purpose, Sokolov spends at least 180 days a year in America, that is, the period required for obtaining a green card after buying a property.
Sokolov headed Khabarovsk from 2000 to September 2018. At the moment, he is a member of the City Duma’s political council and a member of the Presidium of the regional organization of the United Russia party. Some sources say, he plans to be elected to the Legislative Duma of the Khabarovsk Territory in the autumn. In addition, all people associated with the former mayor retained their posts after his departure.