Russian senators' sideline reality 

Russian senators' sideline reality
Photo: The CrimeRussia

The arrest of Rauf Arashukov was a signal to the other senators: not only the governors but also members of the Federation Council, have lost the status of untouchables. So, it’s time to learn to live modestly, without inappropriate luxury. The most perspicacious realized this a few years ago and stopped giving their beloved ones.

After the arrest of Senator Rauf Arashukov, the speaker of the upper house of parliament, Valentina Matvienko, confidently stated that there were no senators "with a dubious past or present." But Dmitry Savelyev, the Senator from the Tula region and a member of the budget and financial markets committee, immediately questioned the words of the Chairman of the Federation Council. On February 9, the United Russia Senator celebrated the 45th anniversary of his wife, Olga.

Savelyev decided to celebrate the anniversary of his beloved wife in Barvikha near Moscow renting a concert hall in a country complex of Barvikha luxury village. The culprit of the celebration chose the theme of the party - The Mood Color is Red. The birthday girl pompously appeared before the guests from the huge fiery eye. And then she changed outfits five times.

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Barvikha luxury village    

Guests watched large-scale video installations with the Senator's wife. Actor Vyacheslav Manucharov was chosen to be the host of the holiday, and stars of the Russian pop scene, Svetlana Loboda, Dima Bilan and Ivan Dorn, were entertaining the guests. “I want to say that you have an awesome musical taste,” Dorn praised the choice of the birthday girl. The lady in red even deigned to sing a duet with Bilan.


Dmitry Malikov, his wife Elena and their daughter Stephanie attended the party. 18-year-old girl posted on Instagram video with dancing parents.

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Dmitry Malikov, his wife Elena and their daughter Stephanie attended the party. The 18-year-old girl posted on Instagram video with dancing parents.

Fashionable metropolitan restaurateur Arkady Novikov answered for expensive dishes. And Dmitry Savelyev, the loving husband, personally sliced a huge cake on the stage.

It's funny that the hospitable hosts did not even try to hide the genuinely royal scale of the celebration. Guests freely shared videos from the banquet in social networks. Their feast was ensured by vigilant security around the perimeter of the concert hall.

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Senator Dmitry Savelyev

Journalists have calculated: according to the modest estimates, the holiday cost a tidy sum to the loving spouse - at least 10 million rubles. The renting a concert hall in Barvikha luxury village  costs about 2.5 million rubles at the weekend. Loboda appoints twice as much for each performance as last year after the birth of a child - 3.7 million on ordinary days. Bilan receives at least 2.2 million for performances in the Moscow region. As for Dorn, the price of his services ranges from 1.5 to 3 million rubles.

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According to producer Yuri Borisov, the performances of the stars cost Savelyev even more: “Loboda can now cost from 7 to 10 million rubles. Bilan takes the same fees, and Dorn - well, a little cheaper. ”At the same time, as Borisov noted, the Senator spent the considerable expenses for a rider.

But Savelyev used to spend even more for his birthday. So, in September last year, the politician celebrated his half-century anniversary worth at least 60 million rubles. A magnificent celebration was held in the Moscow region, in a closed film and television complex on Novorizhskoye highway.

At the anniversary of the Tula Senator, there were much brighter stars of show business than at the birthday party of Savelyev's wife - Nikolay Baskov, Dmitry Malikov, Vera Brezhneva and Valery Meladze. The high status of the event was emphasized by the star guests - first woman cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, hockey legend Vladislav Tretyak and composer Igor Krutoy. Photos with them were prudently posted on the Instagram of Irina Podvolodskikh, sister of Olga Savelyeva. But as soon as the journalists paid attention to them, they immediately deleted all the pictures.

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The culmination of the luxury holiday Savelyev, for which the governors of the Tula and Moscow regions interrupted their vacations at the foot of Elbrus and flew to Moscow by helicopter, was the ceremony of slicing of the birthday cake. A giant masterpiece of confectionery art with a golden lion head was lowered from heaven to earth on several ropes.

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However, Savelyev's shocking behavior is the exception rather than the rule. The rest of the Russian politicians are trying to behave more modestly. Now they no longer hold multi-day parties in the Abrau-Durso wine-growing reserve. They do not give their beloved yachts and private jets, trimmed with ostrich leather, dresses made from petals of rare flowers, diamonds in the size of a walnut. And they do not buy luxury estates outside of Russia but tend to get rid of them. If in 2013, 19 senators officially owned real estate abroad, today there are only four. And members of the Federation Council regularly declare those foreign estate that have not yet been sold. 

Thus, Senator Lyubov Glebova indicated that, together with her husband, she owns a spacious residential house and land plot in Germany, Senator Tatyana Lebedeva owns homes in Estonia and an apartment in Portugal. Kursk Senator Vitaly Bogdanov owns one modest house in Italy with an area of only 350 squares.

Previously, corruption fighters regularly found undeclared property abroad owned by United Russia senators. So, in 2013, the FBK found an estate in France with a tennis court and a house for servants and another apartment in Paris with a view of the Eiffel Tower at the ownership of Senator from the Tambov region Alexander Babakov. 

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Senator from the Tambov region Alexander Babakov

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His mansion

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Apartments in Paris

In 2015, Senator from the Kamchatka Territory Valery Ponomarev put on blast two luxury villas in Spain with multi-level gardens and a swimming pool in an elite gated community. But over the past year, the undeclared property was found only at the disposal of one Senator - representative of the Krasnoyarsk Territory Andrey Klishas.

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Andrey Klishas

At the very end of last year, FBK published another investigation; it found out that the author of the scandalous law on “sovereign Internet” and the punishment for “disrespectful attitude towards the authorities on the Internet” has a much more impressive list of property than its declaration covers. In addition to the three-level villa in Switzerland with an area of 432 square meters, a pool and a plot of land of 975 squares on the shore of Lago Maggiore, Klishas has three estates in the Moscow region, one of which, is not yet completed, and is larger than the palace of chairman of Vnesheconombank Shuvalov. Also, the Senator owns an expensive Maybach worth 12 million rubles, which is not mentioned on the income statement, and a collection of wristwatches with a total value of over 160 million rubles ($2.4m).

How did Klishas respond to allegations of corruption fighters? The Krasnoyarsk Senator did not deny anything. On the contrary, he said that he has "much more." And when asked if such ostentatious luxury doesn’t mean double standards, he said that he didn’t say anything like that. But otherwise, Klishas behaves much more cautiously than Savelyev, who is shocking people and ratting out his colleagues with luxury holidays.

And this is not the only mistake of the Tula Senator. FBK found not only undeclared but also illegal property at United Russia officials. The Prosecutor's Office carried out an inspection and confirmed that the Senator fenced the area of the forest near the Rublyovskoye Highway belonging to the forest estate. By the way, the property belonging to the Tula Senator is also there: s a modest house in England with an area of almost half a million squares and of course, the car park - Maybach 57 and Mercedes-Benz S500 4MATIC, the spouse owns Porsche Cayenne S and Harley-Davidson FLSTC. But all this is declared, as it should be done according to the law. 

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Klishas' mansion

And most importantly, it looks inconspicuous against the general background. For example, Senator Bogdanov owns not only a house in Italy but also a whole fleet of executive cars. Among them, three Bentley: classic Arnage sedan and two sports cars Continental GT, as well as the last Soviet government limousine ZIL-4104. But even the media mogul Bogdanov understands that times have changed, and tries to live more modestly. Thus, in just one year, the Kursk Senator got rid of three retro cars at once: the GAZ-13 Chaika, ZIM-12 and vintage German Horch from the first half of the 20th century no longer covered in the declaration for 2017. 

Today, only those senators who have already lost this status are living their best lives. So, the gorgeous anniversaries of Savelyev look just pathetic on the background of the holidays, which are arranged by his former colleague - ex-Senator from Chechnya Umar Dzhabrailov. He does not hesitate to overspend. At the end of August last year, Dzhabrailov celebrated his nephew's wedding so loud that even foreign media discussed the luxury of a celebration for a long time.

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The former Senator has chosen a decent bride, 18-year-old Khav Zaurbekova, a student at Chechen State University and representative of an influential clan in the republic, for 20-year-old MSU student Ahmed Dzhabrailov. The young people got married in Grozny and then went to Moscow on a private jet, where they celebrated their wedding in the fashionable Safisa hall.

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About 400 guests came to congratulate the couple, including State Duma deputy and Kadyrov's right hand Adam Delimkhanov. To impress the distinguished guests, the Dzhabrailovs did not spare the money. The dress for the bride was ordered from the famous Lebanese designer Zuhair Murad. According to estimates of the UK newspaper Daily Mail, Khava’s outfit cost at least 200 thousand dollars. The dress was strewn with jewels, so the weight of the dress turned out to be more than 45 kg. The bride couldn’t even climb the stairs on her own: a few maids of honor helped Khava to get to the second floor of the celebration house.

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The wedding was celebrated in the Muslim tradition, so there was no expensive alcohol on the tables, but the caviar and sturgeon were the main courses. A wedding cake from the star pastry chef Renat Agzamov turned out so huge that the waiters had to roll it. This masterpiece of culinary art cost another 3 million rubles. But the hosts of the event did not spend money on Russian stars. Only Chechen artists and Nadezhda Kadysheva performed at the festival. Her performance was a gift for the newlyweds since the son of Kadysheva is a close friend of the groom's elder brother. 

A couple of months later, Umar Dzhabrailov married off his niece, 22-year-old Ainan Dzhabrailova, a student at Moscow State University. The 26-year-old Chechen Haidaran Sheripov, who also lives and studies in Moscow, became the girl’s chosen one. Therefore, the celebration took place in the Russian capital, in the same Safisa restaurant.

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They did not change the designer of the wedding dress either and ordered it from Zuhair Murad. At this time, a luxurious outfit with a long train cost even more - 30 million rubles. The bride put on the wedding jewelry from the British jeweler Graff Diamonds, complementing them with an exclusive tiara, created in Dubai. The bride's dowry took 32 designer suitcases from the limited collections of the brands Louis Vuitton, Etro, and Versace. Bags alone cost more than 20 million rubles. The baggage filling is unknown. The Daily Mail newspaper suggested that there were not things, but money. 

But all blinker at Dzhabrailov's actions: after all, he no longer has the status of the Senator. In July last year, Dzhabrailov was expelled from United Russia for getting drunk and firing at the Four Seasons Hotel in Moscow. As Matvienko hinted, the senators should have no dubious past or present. The first requirement can not be fulfilled by most of the members of the Federation Council, and they try to meet the second one.

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