Writing poems, selling out assets. Ex-Head of Mari El to pay multimillion debts 

Writing poems, selling out assets. Ex-Head of Mari El to pay multimillion debts
Leonid Markelov Photo: The CrumeRussia

Apparently, the business empire of Leonid Markelov is to be sold in pieces. It turns out that the former Head of the Mari El Republic has accrued multimillion debts.

The Administration for the Mari El Republic of the Federal Bailiffs Service has received several enforcement proceedings against some T... Limited Liability Company instituted on the basis of execution writs issued by the Arbitration Court of the Mari El Republic. The City of Yoshkar-Ola Municipal Entity is taking steps to collect the debt. The Committee for Municipal Property Management of the Yoshkar-Ola Administration is the plaintiff. The amount of the debt exceeds 25 million rubles ($424.3 thousand). The bailiffs have frozen all the company’s accounts and assets within the limits of the claim amount.

The CrimeRussia became aware that T company is, in fact, 12 Region TV Company Limited Liability Company belonging officially to Tatiana Markelova, stepmother of the ex-Head of Mari El. Natalia Kozhanova, General Director of the company, is in custody – she has been charged with mediation in bribery in the framework of the criminal case against Markelov. Earlier the holding had officially belonged to Irina Markelova, spouse of the ex-Head of Mari El, who told the investigators that members of his family had controlled the lion’s share of ‘the Mari El business’, while Leonid Markelov was actively supervising and manipulating it – and not for the benefit of the republic, but mostly for personal gain. It is necessary to note that the companies were generating good revenues for Markelov’s relatives – for example, above-mentioned Irina Markelova had declared an income of 46 million rubles ($760.7 thousand) in 2012.

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Leonid Markelov and Irina Markelova

It is known that 12 Region TV Company was specializing not only in advertisement, but also in construction. It was purchasing shares and companies en masse and seized the entire Mari El real estate market in a short while. The ex-wife of Markelov has noted that Markelov was making all decisions pertaining to major deals himself, while she had just signed the papers. After their divorce, the entire business empire had been transferred to the stepmother of Markelov. Tatiana Markelova has also testified in the Basmanny District Court of Moscow; she said that she was managing the business via Natalia Kozhanova, a confidante of Leonid Markelov. The Basmanny District Court has imposed a conservatory attachment upon 116 real properties belonging to six organization affiliated, according to the investigation, with the stepmother of the former Head of Mari El: Iyun’ 2006 (June 2006), 12 Region TV Company, Kardinal (Cardinal), Voskresensky Park, Mariisky Tsement (Mari Concrete), and Chukshinsky Kar’er (Chukshinsky Quarry). The cadastral value of the seized assets is 550 million rubles ($9.3 million). In addition, immediately after the arrest of the ex-Head of Mari El, 23 real properties worth 1 billion rubles ($17 million) have been seized. But first of all, Markelov has to pay his debts in Mari El. 

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Italian Garden in Yoshkar-Ola

The conservatory attachment does not stipulate the sale of assets prior to the court verdict – but the decision of the Arbitration Court of the Mari El Republic is to be enforced because it pertains to the debt collection. Mari El bailiffs have already recovered a portion of the monetary funds for the benefit of the Yoshkar-Ola Administration on the basis of the execution writs, but at as of June 22, 2017, 12 Region TV Company Limited Liability Company still owed 16.682 million rubles ($283.1 thousand) to its creditors. The bailiffs have found that 12 Region TV Company owns 4 vehicles – Volkswagen Tiguan built in 2015, GAZ 2752 built in 2012, and two Land Cruisers Prado 200 built in 2009 and 2014 – and 109 real properties, including a health resort, cottage wellness center, trade center, hotel complex, land lots, administrative and public buildings, stores, apartments, and spaces in underground parking lots. The real properties are located not only in Mari El, but also in Moscow. Ultimately, the bailiffs have prohibited the sale of these health resorts, homes, and stores and registered liens upon 11 real properties located in Yoshkar-Ola. The preliminary value of the assets is estimated at 30 million rubles ($509.1 thousand). Should the managers of Markelov fail to pay the issued bills, all these properties are to be sold by auction.

In addition, it turned out that 12 Region TV Company Limited Liability Company has more debts. The Arbitration Court of the Mari El Republic is going to examine in July two lawsuits for the total amount of 20 million rubles ($339.4 thousand) filed by Mosremstroy state enterprise against 12 Region TV Company. During his ‘reign’ in Mari El, Markelov had disdained to pay for anything – apparently, he believed that everything belongs to him. But as soon as the official was remanded in Lefortovo Pretrial Detention Center, his creditors, one by one, started filing lawsuits with courts. The business empire of Markelov is collapsing. It can’t be ruled out that Markelov’s family crest on his former residence in the Yoshkar-Ola Kremlin is to remain the only remnant of his multibillion fortune.

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