1 Dec 2022 16:35

Moscow court sentences Summa Group founder Ziyavudin Magomedov to 19 years in penitentiary

MOSCOW. Dec 1 (Interfax) - Moscow's Meshchansky District Court has sentenced Summa Group founder Ziyavudin Magomedov to 19 years in a high-security penitentiary on counts of the establishment of a criminal network and multibillion embezzlement of budget funds, an Interfax correspondent said in a report.

"To sentence Magomedov conclusively to 19 years in a high-security penitentiary with custodial restraint," the judge said.

Magomedov was also sentenced to two years of restrictions and fined 2.5 million rubles.

The court deprived the businessman of his state awards, the Order of Friendship and the Order of Honor.

The court sentenced another defendant, Magomed Magomedov, former member of Russia's Federation Council and brother of Ziyavudin Magomedov, to 18 years in a high-security penitentiary, a fine of 2.5 million rubles, and two and a half years of restrictions.

Former Intex chief Artur Maksidov has been sentenced to 12 years of imprisonment at a high-security facility and a 1.5 million ruble fine; Sergei Polyakov, ex-general director of Obyedinyonnaya Zernovaya Kompaniya (OZK, United Grain Company), to 12 years and a 1.5 million ruble fine.

OZK's former head of economic security, Roman Gribanov, has been sentenced to ten years at a medium-security facility and a one million ruble fine. Yury Petrov, general director of the Energiya-M enterprise, to seven years at a medium-security facility and a 700,000 ruble fine.

The court also awarded damages to three civil law plaintiffs - the OZK, the Federal networking company Rosseti (FSK EES) and the St. Petersburg Transport Infrastructure Committee worth 3.5 billion rubles, and sent other lawsuits, including a 5.8 billion ruble one from Russia's Prosecutor General's Office, to civil courts.

When sentencing the defendants, the court took into account the absence of aggravating circumstances and the presence of several mitigating ones: positive references, having dependent family members, and so on.

The case was heard by a trio of judges since March 2021. The sentencing took six days after taking into account adjournments and courthouse evacuations.

Depending on the role of each one of them, the defendants were found guilty of the creation and membership of a criminal group, including with the use of official position, massive fraud and massive misuse of funds. Magomed Magomedov was also found guilty of two counts of illegal gun possession.

According to the sentence, no later than 2010, the Magomedovs set up a criminal gang with a view to stealing federal and regional funds. As the investigators and the court established, the gang operated on the basis of a holding company called Summa Group, controlled by the brothers, and its companies.

At issue are nine counts of embezzlement totaling 11 billion rubles, including during the creation of an artificial land plot off Krestovsky Island in St. Petersburg, the preparation of a construction site for Baltika Stadium in Kaliningrad, the set-up of electrical equipment at the Vasileostrovskaya sub-station in St. Petersburg and Nerungrinskaya GRES (State District Power Plant), and the reconstruction of Khrabrovo Airport in Kaliningrad.

Russian Prosecutor General's Office spokesman Andrei Ivanov said in comments on the case outcomes that between 2010 and 2016, the criminals led by the Magomedovs stole in total more than 15 billion rubles from the state.

As the court noted in its sentence, the activities of the defendants could not be deemed legal business aimed at profit-making because its "sole" aim was to embezzle public funds.

"The defendants [...] were part of the same criminal chain," the court said.

The Magomedovs and the other convicted co-defendants maintained their innocence throughout the inquiry and the trial. Ziyavudin Magomedov said the case was a "symbiosis of lies and absurdities."

In all, there are about 20 suspects linked to the Magomedovs, some of whom are wanted and have been arrested in absentia in Russia.

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