Kolomoiskiy might go to prison for 12 years for fraud and money laundering.
Once, one of the biggest and most prominent oligarchs of Ukraine, Ihor Kolomoiskyi, lost the lion's share of his assets in a year and ended up in the detention center of the SBU. How did it happen?
The first alarm signal will be the US sanctions introduced in March 2021 against Kolomoiskyi and his closest relatives. After the start of the Great War, severe problems for the Dnipro businessman began in Ukraine as well. One by one, he lost control over assets valued at tens of billions of hryvnias.
This list includes the largest mining company, "Ukrnafta," the second largest private gas production company, "Ukrnaftoburinnia," the Kremenchuk Refinery, more than 500 gas stations, and oil depots. Due to the war, the UIA airline will stop working, not the best times will come for the oligarch's chemical and metallurgical businesses, and one of the most influential and highest-rated channels, "1+1" will start speaking only within the framework of a single telethon (combined broadcasting of the Ukrainian tv channels reporting about the war).
Everything will end with a suspicion of committing a crime under articles on fraud and money laundering and a ticket to the SBU detention center.
On the day of Kolomoiskyi's arrest, in his evening address, Volodymyr Zelenskyi said that it would no longer be "as usual" in the country regarding those who robbed Ukraine and put themselves above the law and any rules. "I thank the law enforcement officers for their determination to finish each case stalled for decades. The law must work," the president emphasized.
At what point did the relationship between the president and the oligarch pass the point of no return? In official and unofficial conversations, representatives of the President's Office call the latter's reluctance to help the Armed Forces the main reason for the deterioration of relations between the authorities and Kolomoisky.
The oligarch's managers called such information false, and the businessman decided not to comment until the war ended. Kolomoisky did not communicate with the press during the selection of preventive measures on Saturday.
On September 6, the court considered the appeal of the businessman's defense against the decision to keep him in custody due to the case of fraud and money laundering. What evidence did the detectives gather about Kolomoisky, how did he withdraw money from Ukraine, and why might the oligarch receive new suspicions shortly?
The suspicion Kolomoiskyi received from the SBU and BEB on September 2 refers to a criminal plan that the businessman implemented in two stages.
The first stage, described by detectives in the suspicion, refers to December 2013. Then, according to the law enforcement officers, the oligarch developed a criminal plan, the ultimate goal of which was to acquire a large amount of funds fraudulently.
The document contains the names of two financial institution officials: chief treasurer, Andriy Zorba, and the head of the cash operations department, Victoria Ladna. The investigators said these persons did not know about the businessman's plans.
According to the detectives, at the first stage, Kolomoiskyi pretended to deposit UAH 949 million into Privatbank's cash register, which did not go to the bank but was credited to the oligarch's account. In this way, he got the opportunity to dispose of non-cash funds.
After that, Kolomoisky entered into suretyship agreements with Privatbank and "simulatedly paid off the loan of the company Naftohimik Prykarpattia controlled by him to the bank" on his behalf. Thus, the oil company incurred a debt to Kolomoisky himself.
Subsequently, the funds from Naftohimik Prykarpattia were transferred to Kolomoiskyi's account in another financial institution - Ibox Bank. At this arrangement stage, Kolomoisky allegedly took possession of UAH 572 million.
According to the investigators, in the second stage - in 2020-2021 - legalization of these funds took place.
According to law enforcement officers, Kolomoisky exchanged the specified amount for euros and transferred it to four companies' accounts for payment of legal services. Two companies registered in the USA, one in Great Britain and one in Switzerland, received 25.5 million euros. "Thus, the second stage of Kolomoiskyi's criminal plan was completed," the detectives say.
What threatens Kolomoisky if the law enforcement officers bring this case to an end? According to the mentioned articles on fraud and money laundering, Kolomoisky was sentenced to 8 to 12 years in prison.
That's not all. New suspicions are being prepared. On Saturday, near the Shevchenkivskyi court, the businessman was asked whether he had time to familiarize himself with the case materials. Kolomoisky briefly answered that he was traveling from Dnipro to Kyiv and did not have time: "Very quickly, superficially (acquainted himself)." At the same time, he emphasized that he "absolutely disagrees" with what he managed to read.
After the court session, the oligarch's defenders briefly commented on the case. "We're filing an appeal, we're waiting for the full text of the court decision, we're not paying bail, we're going to Askoldiv Lane (SBU detention center )," lawyer Oleksandr Lysenko said.
NABU ( National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine) may soon charge Kolomoiskyi for withdrawing funds from Privatbank. Forbes sources in law enforcement agencies confirmed this information the day before.
The investigation into the embezzlement of tens of billions of hryvnias by "Ukrnafta" and "Ukrtatnafta," as part of which Kolomoiskyi's house was searched in February, is also under investigation.
Only one figure from Serhiy Koretskyi, who headed both enterprises after nationalization in November 2022, testifies to the scale of possible abuses at the enterprises. In one of his interviews, he emphasized that Kolomoiskyi's management caused "Ukrnafta" and "Ukrtatnafta" losses of approximately UAH 100 billion.
Russian missiles hit 3 Ukrainian cities, killing 1, injuring at least 45
Russian troops launched missile attacks against the cities of Kryvvi Rih, Zaporizhzhia, and Sumy on the morning of Sept. 8, killing one person and wounding at least 45 people.
Russia hit a police station in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast’s Kryvvi Rih, damaging nearby residential buildings as well, Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko reported.
One police officer has been confirmed killed, and six more employees injured, as of 10 a.m. local time, according to Klymenko.
It is known that 41 people were injured in the Kryvvi Rih missile strike as of around 11 a.m. local time, reported Oleksandr Vilkul, head of the city military administration. Nineteen people were hospitalized.
According to Dnipropetrovsk Oblast Governor Serhii Lysak, three administrative and seven residential buildings were damaged.
According to Vilkul, the administrative building where the police were stationed also hosted several offices, including his foundation, "Ukrainian perspective."
In northeastern Sumy, a Russian missile hit a two-story apartment building, causing a large-scale fire and damaging over 20 houses and eight vehicles, the State Emergency Service’s regional department reported.
Three people have been injured in the attack, including an elderly couple rescued from the rubble, according to the Sumy Oblast police.
According to preliminary information published by the city's acting mayor, Anatolii Kurtiev, the morning attack injured another man in Zaporizhzhia, southern Ukraine.
The blast wave shattered windows in several high-rises and educational institutions, Kurtiev said on Telegram.
The number of casualties might be updated through the day.
Russian attacks have reduced Ukraine's ability to export grain by third
The UK government has cited figures that Russian strikes on ports and grain elevators have reduced Ukraine's ability to export grain by a third in two months.
The UK government's press release said Russian strikes have damaged or destroyed at least 26 civilian port infrastructure facilities, warehouses, silos and grain elevators since July, reducing Ukraine's export capacity by about one third.
London notes that such volumes of grain would be enough to meet the food needs of about 1 million people throughout the year.
The Prime Minister's office also confirmed that the UK is conducting surveillance and reconnaissance flights in the Black Sea to "deter Russia from carrying out illegal strikes against civilian vessels transporting grain."
Rishi Sunak's spokesperson said he would "use any opportunity" at the G20 summit to convey to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that the war unleashed by Russia is causing significant problems worldwide.
It was reported earlier that the UK is preparing a summit for countries suffering from high food prices due to the war unleashed by the Russian Federation.
It was also reported that at a meeting with the Indian PM, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will call on the Indian government to influence the Russian Federation on the issue of the war against Ukraine.