5 Dec 2022 14:38

Moscow court sentences Petropavlovsk founder Maslovsky to 5.5 years in prison on fraud counts

MOSCOW. Dec 5 (Interfax) - Moscow's Basmanny District Court has sentenced Pavel Maslovsky, founder and former general director of the Petropavlovsk company, to 5.5 years in a general penitentiary on fraud counts, a court representative told Interfax on Monday.

"The court has sentenced Maslovsky to 5 years and six months in a general penitentiary," the representative said.

In addition, the court granted a compensation claim from the plaintiff, the Pokrovsky Rudnik company, worth over 99 million rubles.

Maslovsky's lawyers said they would appeal the sentence.

A prosecutor demanded during argument that Maslovsky be sentenced to 7.5 years in a penitentiary. The defense insisted on his acquittal.

Maslovsky was charged with large-scale fraud. His case centers on the purchase by a Maslovsky-controlled company of a building in Blagoveshchensk that belonged to the businessman's son. According to investigators, the building was purchased at an inflated price, thus causing 95 million rubles in damages.

Maslovsky was detained in February 2021. The businessman denies any wrongdoing. Last year, Maslovsky's son, Alexei Maslovsky, was put on the wanted list in Russia and was arrested in absentia.

The Petropavlovsk company, which once ranked among the top five Russian gold miners, filed for bankruptcy in 2022, citing problems with selling gold and servicing its debt. In September, the company sold all of its key assets to affiliates of Ural Mining and Metallurgical Company. Yuzhuralzoloto owner Konstantin Strukov became Petropavlovsk's largest shareholder with a nearly 29% stake.