Putin’s former corrupt assistant sets sights on Federation Council vice speaker post
Senator Vladimir Kozhin may become the Deputy Speaker of the Federation Council after the September election.
Vladimir Kozhin, the former military-technical cooperation assistant to the president of Russia, First Deputy Chairman of the Defense and Security Committee at the Federation Council, may be elected Vice Speaker of the upper house of parliament, RIA Novosti reports with reference to several informed sources.
Earlier it was reported that Kozhin could replace Dmitry Mezentsev, head of the Federation Council’s economic policy committee, who became Russian ambassador to Belarus.
After Vladimir Kozhin was dismissed from his post as head of the presidential affairs department in May 2014, illegal sale of land was exposed. The prosecutor's office of the Moscow region and Krasnodar region filed several suits on the termination of transactions between the presidential affairs department and commercial companies. In the fall of 2014, law enforcement officers appealed the sale of land in the Moscow region and Sochi. Prosecutors believe that all of them had been concluded in violation of the current legislation since the land should not be alienated from the public, and in some cases the prices were unjustifiably underestimated.
In the summer of 2015, after Roscosmos reps appealed to law enforcement agencies, a Kvant-N stock fraud case was initiated; the company was part of the government entity. In 2012, at Kozhin’s initiative, all the company’s shares were sold to a certain LLC Temperance, owned by Cypriot and BVI offshore companies. According to prosecutors, the property was sold in 4 months without bidding, which was a violation of the privatization law. The proceeds from the sale were not transferred to the budget, and by order of the presidential affairs department, 500 million rubles went to the Rublevo-Uspensky Federal State Independent Institution. The head of one of the divisions of the presidential affairs department, as well as the former heads of Kvant-N and Temperance ended up in the dock; however, Kozhin was only a witness in the case.
At the end of 2012, the presidential affairs department head got into the spotlight when the press ranted about the barbaric liquidation of the unique Middle Trading Rows on Red Square, which was opposed by institutions like Moskomnaslediye, Rosokhrankultura and Methodical Council at the Ministry of Culture.
Kozhin was also suspected of a hostile takeover of the Tverskoy Passage shopping complex in the same 2012. In any case, as stated by Vladislav Vasnev, the Chairman of the Board of Piramida-2000 LLC (a tenant of the shopping center areas), it started with about 30 armed men entering Tverskoy Passage. The shopping center then was taken over by the presidential affairs department. Piramida 2000 tried to sue the presidential affairs department, but was soon forced to abandon its lawsuit.
Novaya Gazeta also reported that in 2009, Kozhin acquired more than 77 thousand square meters of land on the picturesque bank of Moskva River, 25 km from the capital, at a price of $50 per hundred meters, while the real cost of hundred meters in the area started at $500,000.
After resigning from the post of presidential affairs manager, Kozhin was appointed as military-technical cooperation assistant to the president and became a senator from Moscow in 2018.