Gaizer OCC’s cash keeper distributed bribes in Excel spreadsheet

Gaizer OCC’s cash keeper distributed bribes in Excel spreadsheet
Konstantin Romadanov

Former Deputy Chairman of the Komi Government Konstantin Romadanov described the mechanics of distribution of one-off and regular payments to corrupt officials in the republic’s leadership.

Ex-Deputy Chairman of the Komi Government Konstantin Romadanov has been questioned by the Syktyvkar Court as a witness for prosecution in the case of ex-Chairwoman of the Republic’s Election Commission Elena Shabarshina, Kommersant reports.

When testifying, Romadanov, who concluded a pre-trial agreement with the investigation and admitted to being a cash keeper of the organized crime community (OCC) led by Komi Republic Head Vyacheslav Gaizer in September 2016, described the mechanics of distribution of illegal remuneration to officials.

During the interrogation conducted by the Zamoskvoretsky Court of Moscow via video link, a defendant in the Gaizer case, Romadanov, once again confirmed that he was the cash keeper of the criminal community, which, according to the investigation, included the top leadership of the Komi Republic.

He also said that he was recording all amounts distributed to OCC members by means of Excel spreadsheets, however, he could not recall how much money was kept in the officials’ ‘common fund’.

According to Romadanov, the money from the OCC’s common fund intended for people from ex-Governor Vyacheslav Gaizer’s entourage would be transferred on behalf of Deputy Head of the region Aleksey Chernov. Romadanov would enter encrypted names of beneficiaries into the Excel spreadsheet, and amounts opposite to them. Then, according to the spreadsheet, former Director of Complex Projects Management Aleksey Sokolov gave Romadanov envelopes with money, which the latter would then hand over to Chernov on the twentieth of each month.

The money allocation spreadsheet in question seized during the search was also submitted to the court. According to it, ‘ТВА’ (predecessor of Gaizer as head of the Komi republic, Vladimir Torlopov) would receive 1.5 million rubles ($23.830) a month, ‘ЧАЛ’ (former First Deputy Head of the republic Aleksey Chernov) would get 1 million rubles ($15.887), same as Vyacheslav Gaizer (code-named ‘ГВМ’). In total, there were 13 high-ranking Komi officials on the list. According to the investigation, the total amount of monthly payments to members of the crime community was more than 4 million rubles ($63.548).

To recall, in the autumn of 2016, after concluding a deal with the investigation, Konstantin Romadanov exposed the OCC’s offshore schemes, and a year ago, a criminal case was initiated against Vekselberg’s companies top managers Evgeny Olkhovik, Boris Vaynzikher, and Mikhail Slobodin based on his testimony.

Head of the Komi Republic Election Commission Elena Shabarshina, in the trial of whom under part 6 of Art. 290 of the Russian Criminal Code (Bribe-Taking on an Especially Large Scale) Romadanov testified, would receive 60 thousand rubles ($953) a month from Chernov from November 2006 to August 2015. According to the investigation, the total amount of bribe amounted to 6.68 million rubles ($106.125). In exchange for it, Shabarshina would provide Aleksey Chernov with operative information on the progress of elections and acquainted the republic deputy head and his proxies with the protocols of the precinct election commissions of Syktyvkar before the results of voting were entered in the Vybory Russian State Automated System.

The criminal case against Elena Shabarshina was submitted to court in January 2017, but the hearing was postponed until the autumn, as the person accused attempted suicide on the eve of the trial.

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