Omsk: case filed against former City Hall officials

Omsk: case filed against former City Hall officials
Yuri Gamburg

Former administration officials are suspected of power abuse resulting in a nearly 1-billion-ruble damage to the Omsk treasury.

The Omsk Prosecutor's Office has initiated a criminal case against former city officials that had abused their official powers resulting in a nearly 1-billion-ruble damage to the city treasury.

The Prosecutor's Office specified the reason for the case initiation, which was the findings of an inspection they had conducted. For instance, it was found that in early 2008, House-Building Corporation (HBC) Stroibeton won the bid for the right to lease nine land plots the area totaling ​​about 164 hectares for comprehensive development for the period of ten years, offering 1.2 billion rubles as the maximum cost of the contract. However, the company paid only about 234 million rubles and the mayor's office turned to court.

In September 2009, the Arbitration Court of Omsk Region approved a settlement agreement between the parties, which caused the city budget to suffer losses of 938.000 rubles, the Prosecutor's Office said.

The case was initiated under part 3 of Art. 285 of the Criminal Code (Abuse of Official Powers entailing grave consequences) and has been passed on to the Investigative Committee of the Omsk region.

One of the suspects is Yuri Gamburg, the former Head of the city Construction Department that later became the region’s Vice-Governor before being jailed for selling land plots at a lower price. The other is Vadim Merenkov, also under investigation.

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