Bankers from case into 1/2 billion swindling by Federal Security Service officers tied to Darth Vader offshore

Bankers from case into 1/2 billion swindling by Federal Security Service officers tied to Darth Vader offshore
Vladimir Stolyarenko Photo: TASS

The offshore got the assets the Federal Security Service officers had taken away from a businessman Sergey Glyadelkin.

Former head of Eurofinance of Mosnarbank Vladimir Stolyarenko and a bank director Aleksander Bondarenko - who are defendants in a case into 490 million rubles ($7.5 million) swindling against officers of ‘K’ directorate of the Federal Security Service Kirill Cherkalin, Dmitry Frolov and Andrey Vasiliev - have been put on a wanted list, reports RBC. The bankers’ role in the crime is not being specified.

The officers of the Federal Security Service Cherkalin, Frolov and Vasiliev are accused of theft of 490 million rubles ($7.5 million) from a businessman Sergey Glyadelkin in 2011. The investigation theory is that the law enforcers had made him give them shares of a company Yurpromkonsalting (otherwise, they threatened he would be criminally prosecuted). Then, Glyadelkin was the victim in a case into extortion from a former vice-Mayor of Moscow Aleksander Ryabinin. Frolov supervised the operational escorting of the latter.

Stolyarenko and Bondarenko are tied to a Cyprus-based offshore company Darth Vader Enterprices Limited that, according to RBC, got all the assets the Federal Security Service officers had taken away from the businessman. Since 2014, the bankers owned shares at OOO Telezhnaya 32. 6 months before them, Darth Vader had become the owner of its 100 per cent. At the present time, according to the database of the System of Professional Analysis of Markets and Firms, Telezhnaya 32 is owned by OOO Pansionat otdykha Berezka: its beneficial owner is Evgeny Martynov who was also a key figure in the scheme of extortion of assets from Glyadelkin.

Bondarenko was also tied to a holding Eastib. Frolov - before he was arrested - had worked with a daughter company of Eastib. The senior executive of the holding is a British Frederick Ponsonby. The head company is registered in Cyprus. The beneficial owners do not hide themselves.

Ponsonby is also a chairman of the board of directors at AO RNG. In 2018, Bondarenko was the head of the board of directors’ investment committee at this company.

The booklet on RNG's website states that from 2002 to 2006, Bondarenko was a member on the board of directors of the NTV, TNT and NTV-plus TV channels. In 2005–2010, he was a member of the board of directors of Prime-TASS Agency for Economic Information. Since 2003, Stolyarenko has also been on the board of directors of NTV and TNT.

Since 2013, Stolyarenko has served on the board of Rusgidro. In 2010–2011, Bondarenko was a member of the corporate management committee under the board of directors of the Moscow Interbank Currency Exchange (MICEX}, as well as of the audit commission under the board of directors of the National Settlement Depository. In 2008–2013, he was a member of the board of directors of Taas-Yuryakh Oil and gas production LLC.

In 2016, Kommersant called Stolyarenko a “federal functionary” since from 2012 to 2013 he was on the board of directors of state-owned Zarubezhneft, which led oil projects in Vietnam, Bosnia and Herzegovina and the CIS countries.

In 2005, publication Secret Mag connected Stolyarenko with banker Yury Kovalchuk, claiming that he had made several transactions in the media market in his interests.

In 2010–2014, Stolyarenko was a member of the public council under the FSB of Russia. Since 2007, he taught at the Higher School of Economics (HSE), where he was a professor with the Department of Theory and Practice of Interaction and Power, helmed by the Head of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, Alexandra Shokhina. In May 2019, Stolyarenko's page was removed from the university's website.

At a hearing at Moscow City Court, where the bankers were charged, Frolov stated that Stolyarenko had been living abroad for more than five years, and Bondarenko had not come to Russia for a year. “Thus, it cannot be said that they are hiding from the investigation in this case,” said the accused.

Kirill Cherkalin is also charged with receiving a bribe from businessman Nazarov in the amount of $850 thousand, which he received from November 2013 to February 2015. Rosbalt reported that a search at Cherkalin's turned up 12 billion rubles ($185.8 m).    

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