Events 2022-06-15T06:51:12+03:00
Ukrainian news
Criminal Prosecution Organized By NACB Looking Like A Corrupt Scheme To Sell Collateralized Property - Maksym

Criminal Prosecution Organized By NACB Looking Like A Corrupt Scheme To Sell Collateralized Property - Maksym Berezkin

NACB, Stanyslav Berezkin, Maksym Berezkin, Creative, Creative Group

Criminal prosecution of MP Stanyslav Berezkin, his family members and ex-employees of the Creative Group, aims not to protect interests of state-owned Oschadbank, but to carry out a scheme allowing to sell the collateralized property in favor of third parties.

Ex-supervisory board chairperson of the Creative Group, Maksym Berezkin, said this to the Ukrainian News Agency.

"Someone will pocket the profit, and the detectives will obtain an evidence of our alleged criminal intent. I believe that it was the real role of the NACB in the first place. It wanted to ensure the sale of the Creative's property at an understated price allowing someone to gain on it and declare the Berezkins guilty of everything," he said.

In particular, Berezkin drew attention to the fact that along with carrying out high-priority criminal cases, they started the work on the sale of collateralized property provided to the bank by the Creative Group. The loan itself was secured with sufficient collateral: a new grain elevator commissioned two months before drawing the loan. At present, the cost of the elevator is being artificially understated.

"I cannot be sure for 100%, however, the detectives are taking part in all of this, consciously or not. Judge for yourself: the starting sale price is a shade over USD 6 million when the estimated cost is USD 22 million. The SЕТАМ's reputation, mildly speaking, is ambiguous. Globally renowned companies are unlikely to participate [in respective tender]. Especially after the fuss with detentions and parliamentary immunity. That means the new facility will be sold at an understated price. And later the NACB will use the fact to prove that the bail was insufficient. The lower the asset's sale price is, the larger the loss they will be able to hang on us," he said.

Besides, Berezkin draws attention to the fact that within the said dispute between the bank and the enterprise, the events did not follow the course typical for such situations. At first they should have had negotiations on restructuring of the company, and if no result had been achieved, the collateral would have had to be sold.

"But in our situation, we have seen a sluggish investigation, then suddenly heard public accusations, the suspects even happened spend some time in a remand prison, and the Parliament was demanded bringing my father to criminal responsibility. And all the aforementioned events managed to happen within a month time. Only after that the collateral was offered for bidding at SETAM," Maksym Berezkin noted.

Besides, Berezkin mentioned a statement made by Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yurii Lutsenko at a meeting of the Parliamentary Committee on Rules of Parliamentary Procedure. In particular, then the prosecutor general said that if the new owners of the company had recovered the loan before the loan agreement expired in 2017, there would have been no complaints against the Creative's former owners.

"Yurii Lutsenko admitted that we were prosecuted for the loan-repayment failure of the company I have had nothing to do with since mid-2015. Moreover, the credit facility expired in January 2017. That proves the fact that the NACB was used to settle economic disputes. Every single entrepreneur does understand what this might lead to," he said.

As earlier reported, the NACB and the SACPO are investigating a criminal case upon alleged involvement of member of the Ukrainian Parliament, Stanyslav Berezkin, and his family in embezzlement by the Creative Group of USD 20 million allocated by Kyiv-based Oschadbank (Savings Bank) state-run bank. In 2015, the Berezkins themselves sold the Group to a new owner along with the debt obligations including payables due 2017.

In November 2018, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine did not support the recommendation of Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yurii Lutsenko to terminate parliamentary immunity of Stanyslav Berezkin having declared the evidence in possession of the PGO not convincing.

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