Protected by deputy's seat: Ivan Demchenko and ‘Spanish dossier’
September 10 is the day when State Duma deputies return from summer vacation to the building on Okhotny Ryad. Among them is the hero of our previous investigation, the ‘Steel King of the South of Russia,’ Ivan Ivanovich Demchenko. The owner of the Abinsky Electrometallurgical Plant, which withdraws the profits of companies under its control to the accounts of foreign offshore companies, will once again start working as part of the Duma committee on regulations – it is an unchallenging job, necessary for parliamentary immunity of the deputy and his vast business, which brings billions of rubles annually.
In our previous publication, we gave a sneak peek at the deputy’s dubious past, in whose biography there is a connection with at least two murders, looked at his land holdings, and met his son, Ivan Ivanovich Jr., deputy general director of the AEMZ and the owner of the WOW nightclub, which is a favorite place of Moscow gay community. Now it is time we introduce the rest of his family members.
The family of deputy Demchenko is large, friendly, and very successful, judging by the databases of commercial companies. Others could envy such remarkable talents and even draw parallels with King Midas, who turned everything into gold with his touch. The comparison is quite appropriate; only, it is only based not on myths and fortunate circumstances, but on rather specific cases, often running counter to Russian law.
For example, take the wife of the people’s deputy, Antonina Aleksandrovna Demchenko (born on 12.08.1960). Who would have thought that this woman was well-versed in business matters and scrap metal, vehicles, and freight transportation? Judging by the SPARK database, until recently she was a co-owner of the respective companies. However, as of recent, Antonina Aleksandrovna has changed official activities to something more common for people of her gender and age. According to official data, now the woman is engaged in farming; she has two small agricultural enterprises, Slavyansk-Agroproduct LLC and Slavyanka-A LLC.
The situation of the daughter of Ivan Ivanovich Sr., Alyona Ivanovna Demchenko (Vanina), is not as rosy. Unlike her mother, she did not have a chance to manage the family's main asset. Like her mother, Alyona Ivanovna is engaged in agriculture (wholesale trade in agricultural raw materials); she also owns a small dental clinic.
Alyona Ivanovna did not achieve success in this field. In the database of arbitration cases, there is a case for collecting debts for housing and communal services in the amount of 626 thousand rubles (+15.5 thousand rubles of duty) from her company. The claim of the management company to the deputy's daughter was satisfied in 2015 (the appeal was lost).
If one did not know what kind of activity Demchenko Sr. conducted, it would be possible to assume that the recovery of 626 thousand rubles ($9,724) made his daughter bankrupt. In any case, such a conclusion can be drawn from the decision on the act in the case of an administrative offense dated 05.04.2015 No.18810023150000585555. The traffic police fine, which Alyona Demchenko was supposed to pay, remained outstanding, and the case itself was sent back. The reason was the inability to “establish the whereabouts of the debtor or their property.” As we can see, Alyona Ivanovna is reluctant to pay the bills, but loves to drive dangerously. Actually, it runs in the family: Without a twinge of conscience, Demchenko Sr. violates traffic rules, driving a jeep along the oncoming lane.
There is one other daughter in the Demchenko family, Alina. Judging by the official history of her business activity, she does not follow in her father’s footsteps. Alina Ivanovna has only one company registered in her name. It is the manufacturer of ready-mixed concrete Proinvestment Alina Rabat (abbreviated as PIAR LLC) in Slavyansk-na-Kubani. However, if we take a closer look, we will see that Alina Demchenko is her father's the real daughter (in every sense). Although, the traces of her business activities (as well as the interests of Demchenko Sr.) should not be sought in Russia, but... in Spain!
Alina Velasko and ‘Spanish dossier’
Spain is the birthplace of bullfighting and the beloved country of many wealthy Russian businessmen who prefer to relax on the islands and on the coast, investing money withdrawn from Russia in local real estate. After the ‘Russian Mafia case’ thundered all over the country, citizens of Russia (especially Russian deputies and members of their families) are treated with prejudice here. However, this does not prevent the daughter of Ivan Ivanovich Demchenko from living her life to the fullest. Although, she tries not to advertise her family ties.
Graduate of the prestigious LaSalle University in Barcelona majoring in International Relations, Alina Demchenko positions herself as the managing owner of a 3-star hotel Musik Boutique Hotel, located in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona next to the Cathedral and a 10-minute walk from the famous pedestrian street La Rambla.
The hotel has 23 rooms with personalized design (whatever that means, according to the owner) with a minibar, Bluetooth audio system, Egyptian linen bedding, and luxury bath accessories by Prija.
According to Demchenko herself, she is a perfectionist. This is reflected not only in the hotel itself. Guests will always be advised where to go and what sights to see in order to get the most out of the trip.
Accommodation prices are affordable for the average traveler: from 130 euros for an ordinary room, from 170 for deluxe, and from 190 for a suite. Finding a free room is not easy, but for a small hotel in the historical center of a city like Barcelona, this is quite understandable.
There is a small nuance that an unsuspecting Russian tourist is unlikely to pay attention when staying at this hotel during the trip. The thing is, according to Spanish law, the owner of any site must necessarily post information about its legal affiliation on an Internet resource. As a rule, the corresponding menu item or hyperlink is located at the very bottom of the page, but these menu items are inactive on the hotel’s website.
At first glance, it is a minor violation, which may result in a small fine (by Spanish standards). However, taking into account the personality of the hotel owner, it can be assumed that this was done for a reason. The assumption is confirmed. All it takes is to check the database of companies registered in Spain and get a number of extracts from property registers: The ‘Spanish dossier’ of the Demchenko family contains information on registered companies and assets.
As it turns out, the daughter of the Russian deputy owns 4 existing legal entities in Spain. Another company, VUNITY PHOTO SHARING SL, which was engaged in the development of web services and mobile applications, as well as the provision of consulting services (this is what is listed as the main activity of the legal entity), was liquidated in the summer of 2013.
In 2009, Alina Demchenko registered two companies: SEARCHING THE FUTURE SL (social media work) and THINK TO PROGRESS SL, which was renamed to DEMCHENKO INTERNATIONAL GROUP SL. Over the past 10 years, the company has changed not only the name, but also the registration address and activities. Initially, its area of activity included brokerage services, real estate management, and building maintenance; since 2012, it also includes hotel business management, as well as bar and restaurant management. Tellingly, on December 9, 2012, the company's capital was increased by 3.2 million euros. Apparently, it was aimed for the operation of the hotel, which was discussed above. Today, it is the promotion of online advertising, and the company itself is registered at 13 CL MESTRE NICOLAU, floor 7, 2. PINGVEST 2015 SL (real estate activities) was registered at the same address in 2015, as well as WELTHY MEALS SL (food production and distribution and consultations in the field of nutrition and dietetics), which was registered there last summer.
A co-owner of the last two legal entities is a certain Héctor García Velazco. This is not a nominal person, as one might think, but Alina Demchenko's husband.
The young people got married a little over a year ago, on July 15, 2018. The celebration took place in the hotel of the elite resort village Sagaro on the Costa Brava, HOSTAL DE LA GAVINA. Americans unofficially refer to this place as ‘Hollywood by the Sea.’ Elizabeth Taylor, John Wayne, Joan Fontaine, and Sean Connery loved to stay here, and the land plots are estimated at millions of euros. The ceremony was attended by all members of the Demchenko family, including Ivan Ivanovich Sr. A professional photographer took pictures of both the wedding and the wedding banquet.
At the disposal of the newlyweds and celebration guests was a specially decorated wedding venue, a personalized menu and a rich wine cellar, a luxurious wedding cake made according to a special recipe and exclusive design, a wedding ceremonial master, DJ, and musicians; the wedding took place in the flower-decorated church of Nostra Senyora de l’Esperança.
One can only guess how much the wedding cost the State Duma deputy. Although, we can get a rough estimate. Judging by the pictures from the ceremony, at least 50 guests attended the wedding (there are even more people in the church at the wedding). No matter how frugal our estimate, their stay at the hotel cost at least 7,500 euros (25 double rooms of the “cheapest” category cost 300 euros per night). Add to that food and alcohol, custom-made cake, an exclusive outfit for the bride, flowers and garlands...
Demchenko Sr. paid at least 100-150 thousand euros, or 7-10 million rubles, for the wedding of his daughter at the luxurious hotel. It will take at least ten years for an ordinary resident of Krasnodar to earn this amount. This is only for the ceremony itself, excluding transportation costs. The Demchenko family was brought to the wedding on board their beloved Hawker 1000 with side number VP-BMX, which the deputy regularly rents from Sirius-Aero. Leather, wood, and marble interior, comfy sofas; Ivan Ivanovich Demchenko flies around the world – to Venice, Madrid, Naples, Rome and Dubai – in such a comfortable setting. The people’s deputy loves England and Austria, but visits Spain most often. Over the past year alone, he made more than 10 visits to this sunny country. And not just to see his daughter...
Ivan Demchenko’s daughter lives in a 199-meter penthouse with her own small garden and an open-air dining area at CL MESTRE NICOLAU Num.13 P.7 PTA.2 – the same address, at which 3 companies are registered, including Demchenko International. It is a luxury house in the suburbs of Barcelona (Beliaterra), managed by specially trained guards-majordoms. Nearby are all the attributes of millionaires’ life, including tennis, golf, and flying clubs. There is no housing in new homes that is cheaper than 1-1.5 million euros.
The lawyers paid by Ivan Ivanovich found an elegant solution that allowed him to hide the ownership of the apartments; the property is registered with the bank, but all rights to it belong to Demchenko International on the terms of a finance lease with option to purchase. The encumbrance has been in force since 2014, and this is an extraordinary situation for Spain. People line up for ‘bank’ apartments, while in this particular case, the bank simply lost the right to dispose of the housing, selecting the most unprofitable option of all possible. Most likely, Demchenko paid off the bank a long time ago, but does not re-register documents to ensure incognito, while retaining all the rights to use and dispose of the penthouse.
Considering that all other companies of Demchenko Jr. were also registered in residential buildings, it can be assumed that in each case we were talking about apartments that the parliamentarian bought for his daughter. Alina Demchenko knows on which side bread is buttered, and her father has the means; the houses at all addresses are beautiful.
For example, this one, located at the intersection of Paseo de Gracia Boulevard and Carre de Provence. Here, at PS DE GRACIA, 86, P.8, in the penthouse on the 8th floor, Demchenko International Group was first registered.
If you take a closer look, you will see one of the sights, the famous Casa Mila – a house built by the architect Antonio Gaudi and included in the UNESCO World Heritage List – opposite the house. The boulevard itself is strewn with luxury boutiques of world famous brands. It is a paradise for a girl who does not have to think about how and on what to spend her dad's millions.
The houses located at two other Demchenko International registration addresses (CL AVENIR Num.35 P.6 PTA.2 и CL PORTAFERRISA Num.13 P.3) are a bit more modest, but no less modern and comfortable to live in.
Thanks to Spanish registries, we have the opportunity to look at assets directly registered on Demchenko’s companies. The list is impressive. For example, the house located in San Feliu de Guíxols Marine Resort on the Mediterranean coast (picture from 2018).
The three floors with a residential and office area of over 450 square meters were bought at auction through Pingvest and purchased for mortgage (85 thousand euros). According to experts, the market value of this building can reach 1-1.5 million euros.
Demchenko also has 3 parking spaces and an office in Barcelona (85, Maria Cubi, picture from 2018), as well as a small office in the suburban area of Castelldefels millionaires – a room of 70 square meters at 15b Pintor Serra Santa Street. The Google search came up with ads for the sale of this premises for 120 thousand euros; they have been deleted.
Let us conclude by saying “Run, Ivanovich, run!”
Why does the family of State Duma deputy Ivan Demchenko, who is forbidden to own assets abroad, have so much real estate in Spain? The above is just the part that was found in a relatively easy way. The full list of Spanish assets of the Demchenko family can be much more impressive. At the same time, the efforts and schemes that are used to hide the real owner suggest that the problem is not only in Ivan Ivanovich’s Russian citizenship and deputy’s seat.
To recall, in Russia, the criminal case of the murder of businessman Savchenko, in which Ivan Demchenko is listed as the main suspect, has not yet been terminated. Probably, Ivan Ivanovich still shudders to recall the days spent in the Krasnodar detention center No. 1 and is certainly reluctant to leave his comfortable seat on the Okhotny Ryad. So far, the parliamentary immunity protects him from the close attention of law enforcement agencies, however, as we known from classical literature, the morning sun never lasts a day, and it is applicable to the deputy’s mandate.
Apparently, Ivan Demchenko does not waste any time. While his voters, residents of the Krasnodar region, are trying to earn some mythical retirement points, he invests the proceeds from the export of scrap and its sale on Western markets in Spanish real estate. After serving his parliamentary duties and leaving his plant and Kuban lands to his eldest son, Ivan Ivanovich will wipe away a single tear, climb the plane gangway, and leave Russia and his criminal past, becoming a wealthy Spanish pensioner. Eating jamon and drinking sparkling Spanish wine, ex-deputy Demchenko will enjoy a comfortable life with his family, laughing at Russian law enforcement officers attempting to prevent his fraud activities and make him pay for all the crimes committed.