Ex-Head of FSB Department K interrogated upon smuggling case of businessman Mikhalchenko

Ex-Head of FSB Department K interrogated upon smuggling case of businessman Mikhalchenko

Dmitry Mikhalchenko is accused of smuggling alcohol under the guise of a sealant. The Head of the FSB in St. Petersburg and his deputy are interrogated upon this case.

The Investigative Committee interrogated former Head of the FSB Department Viktor Voronin, Head of the FSB in St. Petersburg Alexander Rodionov and his deputy Nikolay Saraev within the case of Forum holding owner Dmitry Mikhalchenko, accused of smuggling a large batch of alcohol under the guise of a sealant. This was stated by representative of the Prosecutor General's Office Vera Pashkovskaya at a Supreme Court session on October 30, RBC reports.

According to the sources of the edition, the management of the Bureau of Internal Affairs had data on ties between Viktor Voronin and Mikhalchenko. The Head of Department K, which is responsible for control in the banking sector, wrote a report on his resignation in June 2016 after a corruption scandal with his subordinate Vadim Uvarov. In late 2015, Uvarov was one of the defendants in the case of ULS Global, which was suspected of smuggling. In this case, the FSB detained 20 tons of smartphones at the Pulkovo airport. Ivan Tkachev became the new Head of the Department K.

Earlier, the Supreme Court decided to examine the case of Dmitry Mikhalchenko in the Kingiseppsky City Court of the Leningrad region. However, the Prosecutor General's Office appealed against this decision. According to the prosecutor, the accused businessman "has had and has contacts with representatives of power structures." In particular, one of Mikhalchenko's business partners, Boris Korevsky, who is also a figurant of the case, served as Deputy Head of the Department for Combating Economic Crimes of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in St. Petersburg in the past.

As stated in the protocols of interrogations of high-ranking officers of the FSB and the Federal Customs Service, which Pashkovskaya filed to the appeal, when initiating the case, Mikhalchenko and Korevsky tried to influence the authorities. These attempts were suppressed by operational measures.

According to RBC sources, Mikhalchenko's arrest affected the career of several high-ranking servicemen in the security services, in addition to Viktor Voronin. In particular, Federal Guard Service director Yevgeny Murov, who worked for several years in the regional FSB department with a partner of businessman Nikolay Negodov, was dismissed.

Mikhalchenko linked the case against him to the struggle for control over the port of Bronka in the Gulf of Finland. The structures of the businessman are also connected with the case of embezzlement during the restoration of objects commissioned by the Ministry of Culture. During the work, 164 million rubles ($2.8m) were stolen. The accused in this case was former Deputy Minister of Culture Grigory Pirumov. In October 2017, he was sentenced to one and a half years of imprisonment and released in the courtroom, as he had already served this term under arrest during the investigation. The group of companies Baltstroy, which was part of the Forum holding company, was involved in the work. Also, Baltstroy's structures were engaged in construction at the presidential residence in Novo-Ogaryovo. Director of the group of companies Dmitry Sergeev was among the accused of stealing 227.5 million rubles ($3.9m) allocated for these works.

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