Runaway banker Motylev wanted for theft of M Bank worth $12 million

Runaway banker Motylev wanted for theft of M Bank worth $12 million
Anatoly Motylev

Details of the criminal prosecution of the former owner of the banks Globex, Rossiyskiy Kredit and M Bank Anatoly Motylev in the criminal case on fraud on an especially large scale, investigated by the Main Investigative Directorate (MID) of the Investigative Committee of Russia (ICR), have transpired.⁠

Known in Russia as a ‘gravedigger' of 4 banks and 7 non-state pension funds, the banker arranged a knowingly unrecoverable loan of 700 million rubles ($12m) from M Bank, taken on one-day firms, Kommersant reports, referring to the documents that were at the disposal of the publication.

It follows from them that in the spring of 2014, acting out of mercenary motives, Motylev entered into a criminal conspiracy with some Olga Ivanova and "unidentified persons." The conspiracy was aimed at the theft of funds of M Bank, acquired in September 2013 by the structures controlled by Anatoly Motylev, the ICR MID believes.

Investigators suspect Motylev and his accomplices in developing a complex scheme to steal bank funds, according to which the money was supposed to be stolen by issuing a knowingly non-performing loan. As a result, the funds were supposed to be in Rossiyskiy Kredit bank, the president post in which was occupied by Anatoly Motylev at that time.

To implement the plan, Olga Ivanova opened accounts of one-day firms Alicante, LigalVersiya and Media Rezerv, which did not carry out any financial and business activities, in Rossiyskiy Kredit. At the next stage, Stanislav Markeev, general director of Brokerage and Depository Services, was involved in the criminal conspiracy. Crediting of the brokerage facility, previously proved itself as a bona fide borrower, was approved by the bank in March 2014, and 700 million rubles were transferred ($12m). According to the documents, the loan was taken to purchase highly liquid securities.

According to the investigation, subsequently Markeev obtained his company's consent to transfer the money to the account of Univer Capital LLC, and on March 20, Univer sent 700 million rubles ($12m) to Anekt company for investing them in the shares. After that, Anekt bought 25 bills issued by Alicante from LigalVersiya for 696 million rubles ($12m). Since the bills were issued by an organization that did not conduct any activity, they did not have any value. A number of transactions were conducted in just two days.

The company Brokerage and Depository Services repaid the loan until summer 2015, after which the obligations under it were transferred to shell firm LigalVersiya.

After that, investigators believe, Anatoly Motylev used the stolen money in his own interests. Markeev, in turn, prolonged the loan agreement, agreeing to increase the annual rate on it to 17%. Initially, the loan taken from M Bank was repaid, but then, in the summer of 2015, Brokerage and Depository Services transferred the loan obligations to fly-by-night company LigalVersiya. The decision was made by Motylev himself, who had the power of attorney of the chairman of the board of the creditor bank Victoriya Fialko, who, according to the investigation, was not aware of the theft of loan funds.

ICR MID initiated a criminal case on the application of the Deposit Insurance Agency (DIA) some time after the Central Bank had pulled the licenses from M Bank and Rossiyskiy Kredit on July 24, 2015. The reason for it was a number of violations, and the banks owed their customers 38 and 126 billion rubles ($655.8m and $2.1bn), respectively. At first the case was investigated against "unidentified persons", then Motylev, Ivanova and Markeev became its defendants. Currently, Markeev and Ivanova are under arrest until October 31. Concerning Motylev, who had gone abroad long ago, the case against him was opened in absentia. In the spring of 2017, he was put on the federal wanted list, and his property in Russia was arrested to pay damages to M Bank.

However, according to the estimates of the DIA, Motylev's assets do not compensate even one-fifth of the expenses of the Central Bank for payments to legal entities and individuals, insured in his 'financial empire'. And the businessman, living in Britain, is trying to return this arrested property through the court. Moreover, the Moscow City Court appeal body met him halfway, lifting the arrest from a small part of the financier's assets.

It is worth noting that Anatoly Motylev is a remarkable figure among Russian financiers. The state settled with creditors of the banks established by him twice. In 2008, its rehabilitation cost Vnesheconombank 80 billion rubles ($1.3bn). However, a year later Motylev set up AMB-Bank, in 2012 acquired Rossiyskiy Kredit, and later two more banks – Tulskiy Promyshlennik and M Bank. That said, Motylev managed to return to the financial market despite strong criticism from the current first Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank, and then – Deloitte analyst Dmitry Tulin, who called Motylev "champion in driving up financial statements".

In 2015, the Central Bank revoked licenses from the financial and credit organizations owned by Motylev. According to the DIA, his banks had a financial hole in the amount of 80 billion rubles ($1.3bn). At the same time, non-state pension funds owned by Motylev were also deprived of the licenses: Solntse. Zhizn. Pensiya, Solnechnoe Vremya, Adekta-Pensiya, Uraloboronzavodskiy, Zaschita Buduschego, Savings Fund Solnechny Bereg and Sberegatelny. About 60 billion rubles ($1bn) of pension funds of citizens were under their control.

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