Criminal St. Petersburg – former member of Federal Service for State Registration accused of smuggling
The detained ex-member of the Federal Service for State Registration (Rosreestr) was supposedly a member of the group, engaged in illegal traffic. Not only did he help his business partners, but also dealt with competitors.
The Former Deputy Head of the Russian State Register department in St. Petersburg Boris Avakyan has been detained in Moscow. He is accused of smuggling.
Earlier, the investigation department of the MIA directorate for transport in the Northwest has initiated a case on the Evasion of Customs Payments Collected from Organisations or Natural Person (Art. 194 of the Russian Criminal Code).
Earlier this week, security forces have already searched Avakyan’s house, as well as the apartments and offices of his friends. In particular, those of the owner of the Cartier boutique in St. Petersburg, Dmitry Zarubin. He is currently under arrest.
The investigation claims that Zarubin imported expensive foreign household appliances into Russia under the guise of cheap construction materials. As a result, the state lost more than 450 million rubles. Previously, a notable St. Petersburg businessman Dmitry Mikhalchenko used a similar scheme to smuggle expensive alcohol - the contents of the containers were declared as construction materials.
The data implies that a total of three illegal supply pipelines existed in the Northwest. Security forces have found their traces in the Pulkovo airport and in the ports of Ust-Lug and Bronk (controlled by Mikhalchenko).
Previously, the CrimeRussia informed that, through a number of senior officials (mainly from power structures - the Federal Security Service and Federal Protective Service), Mikhalchenko had connections with the Head of the Federal Customs Service Andrey Belyaninov, who was dismissed from the office yesterday. It is known that at the beginning of the year, he asked the Governor of St. Petersburg Georgy Poltavchenko and the Presidential Envoy in the North-West District Vladimir Bulavin to empower customs offices at the Bronk and Ust-Lug ports with exclusive powers of customs control related to the declaration and release of goods.
Moreover, after Mikhalchenko and Zarubin were arrested, many persons involved in these investigations began to testify. Apparently, more dismissals and detentions are to come.
However, Avakyan belonged to a group of Mikhalchenko’s rivals. Using his official position, he tried every possible way to eliminate the competitors. In particular, during his office in Rosreestr, it was reported that the Baltic Customs department occupies an illegally constructed building. He also regularly accused high-ranking employees of the Main Directorate for Combating Illegal Traffic of the Federal Customs Service and the FSB Economic Security Service. In his words, they were bribetakers, who were nightmarizing his friends’ business.
Most likely, he refers to a former FCS officer Pavel Smolyarchuk, detained in December 2015, and his relative, the Head of the 7th Division of the FSB Directorate K Vadim Uvarov, who oversees the customs. This connection was the cause of recent major changes in the FSB. Last month, Uvarov’s boss Viktor Voronin left his post as the Head of the Directorate K. Later, Voronin’s boss, the Head of the FSB Economic Security Service Yuri Yakovlev, also resigned.
Smolyarchuk and Uvarov were supposedly associated with the ULS Logistics Systems, which was involved in a few smuggling scandals. At the Pulkovo Airport, customs officers confiscated a batch of expensive smartphones, delivered on a ULS plane from China. In the port of Ust-Lug, FSB officers searched a ULS Ferry 1 and discovered a batch of expensive clothes, once again declared as construction materials.
Moreover, Mihalchenko’s arrest was made possible largely thanks to Avakyan. On his suggestion, the FSB searched customs terminals in St. Petersburg. As a result, they found containers with smuggled alcohol, which belonged to Mikhalchenko.
At the same time, 34-year-old Boris Avagyan is known to be a rich man and a prodigal, who buys a lot of expensive cars, hosts parties, and funds filming of music videos (for example, he paid for the recording of a song about Yerevan, "The city where dreams come true," performed by Vintage and DJ Smash, as well as a video clip on it).
Fake citizenship and access to state secrets. Former Ukrainian officials get supreme posts in Crimea
More and more questions arise with regards to the staffing policy of the Crimean authorities. This summer, Roman Podsudevsky has been appointed in charge of the Yalta Commercial Port – a strategic objective. The former Ukrainian border guard officer wanted at home for divulgence of state secrets and corruption easily gained the Russian citizenship and made a successful career in Crimea. In March 2017, he was a senior security specialist in Genbank; in the same period, he attempted to become the Head of Shchelkino Municipal Administration but lost in the competition; and since December 2017, Podsudevsky became an aide to Sergei Aksenov. The CrimeRussia was figuring out how former Ukrainian enforcement officers and officials become supreme functionaries in Crimea.
Three officers of the Moscow FSB office, detained in June 2017, are defendants in the criminal case heard by the Moscow Garrison Military Court along with the retired MIA Major-General Viktor Trutnev. The official prosecution asked 7 and eight years’ imprisonment for them.