Court found accounting expertise in Kompas Design Bureau embezzlement case invalid

Court found accounting expertise in Kompas Design Bureau embezzlement case invalid
Murad Safin, former director general of the Moscow design bureau Kompas Photo: Irina Buzhor / Kommersant

The investigation has lost any evidence of damage to the design bureau. New examinations will be appointed.

Head of the Investigative Department of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia in Moscow Igor Yakovlev declared the accounting expertise carried out in the case of embezzling 2.5 billion rubles from Rostec’s Moscow Design Bureau Kompas OJSC invalid. Kommersant reports about this. The investigation in the case will be resumed, the expert audit will be reappointed. Lawyers expect that the results of new examinations will be in favor of their clients.

In total, eight accounting forensic examinations were conducted by the expert-forensic center (ECC) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in August-September 2017. By the time when the injured party, the defendants and the defense got acquainted with the decision on the appointment of examinations, audits were actually conducted. The defense found the investigator's actions invalid. The lawyers filed a complaint with investigator Igor Yakovlev. The latter agreed with violation of Art. 198 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, which allows all parties not only to get acquainted with the decisions on the appointment of examinations, but also to challenge the expert, involve other experts, apply for examinations in other institutions, and ask additional questions to specialists analyzing accounting documents.

Yakovlev ordered the investigator to conduct new accounting examinations in compliance with the norms of the Criminal Procedure Code. According to the defendant's lawyer Yulia Bondarenko, the decision follows that to date the investigation has no evidence of damage to Kompas. The charges were based on the results of the examinations, which declared invalid.

The criminal case on the fact of Swindling on an especially large scale (part 4 of Article 159 of the Criminal Code) in Kompas was initiated by the 12th Directorate of the Main Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Moscow in May 2016 out of Rostec statement. Later, the defendants were accused of Illegal Banking Activity (Article 172 of the Criminal Code) and Creation of the Criminal Community and Participation Therein (part 2 and part 3 of Article 210 of the Criminal Code). According to the investigation, the criminal community was established in 2008 with the aim of stealing budget funds transferring to the accounts of Kompas for the implementation of state contracts. The former leadership of the design bureau allegedly purchased (through Prompostavka) equipment at inflated prices, and also overestimated the cost of the work performed by the one-day firms. Initially, the damage was estimated at 800 million rubles ($14m), then - in 1.8 billion rubles ($31.6m), and as a result, amounted to 2.5 billion rubles ($44m).

In the case, there are eight defendants, including former director general of Kompas Murad Safin, former head of Prompostavka OJSC Ruslan Suleimanov, former deputy director of Kompas and Prompostavka, Dmitry Manuilov, financial director of the Afghan war veterans fund Ekaterina Khlystova, former co-founder of OPK Oboronprom JSC Alexey Leshchinsky and others. The main witness in the case is chief accountant of Kompas Zinaida Shmakova, who testified against all the accused. None of the defendants pleaded guilty.

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