Table silver, collection of wines and expensive devices found at Nizhny Novgorod officer's houses 

Table silver, collection of wines and expensive devices found at Nizhny Novgorod officer's houses
Suspect in the theft of cashiers’money Ikhtiyar Urazalin Photo: Roman Yarovitsyn / Kommersant

Incriminating and material evidence, as well as the stolen money could not be found during searches at Ikhtiyar Urazalin's.⁠

The searches at Ikhtiyar Urazalin's, the former chief of the home front of the Main Directorate (MD) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) of the Russian Federation in the Nizhny Novgorod region, indicated that the total value of the real estate and property of the silovik clearly does not match his official income. The Investigative Committee reported that in total 23 searches in apartments and private homes of the officer were conducted in the case on the theft of 44 million rubles ($767.7 thousand). The operatives discovered a collection of expensive alcoholic drinks, books, silverware, clothes and technical devices. However, the opulent houses did not have the most important thing - the money that the ex-MIA employee stole from the suspected 'cashiers'.

Nevertheless, on September 22, the Moscow District Court of Nizhny Novgorod arrested Ikhtiyar Urazalin. Moreover, he was dismissed from the bodies in August 2017. The criminal case under part 4 of Art. 159 of the Criminal Code (Swindling committed by an organized group or on an especially large scale or resulting in the acquisition of the right to other people's property) was instituted in the spring of 2016, but so far there have been no suspects in the case.

In 2012, a criminal case was opened against Nizhny Novgorod businessman Maxim Osokin on suspicion of illegal banking activities. During the two searches, 22.7 ($396.1 thousand) and 22 million rubles ($383.8 thousand) respectively were seized, which were recognized as material evidence and transferred to the MIA for storage. Osokin allegedly withdrew money through various one-day firms, one of which was in the same building as the branch of Bogorodsky bank. In 2014, the criminal case against Osokin was reclassified to illegal entrepreneurship and terminated under an amnesty. All 44.7 million rubles ($779.9 thousand) were returned to the businessman on receipt, as the fact of cashing was never proved. However, the lawyers of Bogorodsky Bank later proved that part of the cash withdrawn during searches in the amount of 22.3 million rubles ($389.1 thousand) did not belong to Osokin's firm, but to the depositors of the bank. The trial reached the Supreme Court, which instructed to collect this money from the Russian MIA at the expense of the treasury in favor of Bogorodsky Bank, or, more precisely, by that time, the Deposit Insurance Agency, since in March 2016 the Central Bank revoked the license of the credit institution.

However, Osokin claims that he wrote a receipt to avoid punishment for alleged offenses. Instead of 44.7 million rubles ($779.9 thousand), he received bricks wrapped in newspapers in cash bags. He confessed this only when he was arrested in the second criminal case. Osokin is again accused of illegal banking activities as part of an organized criminal community. In addition, according to investigators, he appropriated 150 million rubles ($2.6 m) of the same bank Bogorodsky. The businessman wrote a statement to the Investigative Committee indicating that the seized money was kidnapped by someone in the police.

In early January, 2017, investigators and FSB officers already came with searches to the MIA MD. It is still unknown what exactly the siloviki were searching for and on which case they came. According to the main version, the heads of the Department for Economic Security and Anti-Corruption of the regional central board - Deputy Head of the Directorate Sergei Nikitin and Deputy Head of the Department Evgeny Kosov were hit hard. They were allegedly charged with the loss of 22.3 million rubles ($389.1 thousand), which were once stored as evidence in the case of cashing money by Bogorodsky bank.

At the end of 2016, the Moscow commission headed by General Eduard Sobol also visited the Nizhny Novgorod central board. Its results showed the "unsatisfactory" work of the entire regional police. Immediately after that, the Head of the Nizhny Novgorod police wrote a vacation application, from which he was no longer expected, since the report of his resignation was written at the same time. However, after the vacation, the Head of the MIA Ivan Shaev began to work again. But in March, President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on his dismissal from his post. The reasons for dismissal are not specified in the order.

The names of Nikitin and Kosov did not appear in the reports any more. Now, as Kommersant reports, the testimony against Urazalin was given by a secret witness, who appears under the fictitious name Kolokoltsev. Immediately after the detention of the ex-officer, he was actively interested in names and procedural status of those who testified against him. This became the main argument in the court of investigators, who asked to put the ex-MIA officer in custody. Ostensibly the security official can exert pressure on them. In addition, the suspect, according to the investigator, shortly before the detention inserted the SIM card into a new Iphone. The old phone, which could have a correspondence with the evidence of the crime the investigation was interested in, was not found during the searches.

Ikhtiyar Urazalin himself stated in court that he was detained on an anonymous false accusation. He does not consider himself guilty, because, due to official duties, he did not work with the confiscated material evidence and he had no access to the storage room.

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