The United States accuses Kolomoisky of money laundering. What's next?
The oligarch fell into disgrace to "Uncle Sam"
The US Department of Justice accused Igor Kolomoisky of laundering billions of dollars from PrivatBank and embezzlement. In addition, a lawsuit was filed to confiscate Kolomoisky's assets, which, according to the Ministry of Justice, were acquired with money withdrawn from PrivatBank.
Such high-profile events may indicate that evidence of the oligarch's guilt has already been collected. In Klymenko Time, they figured out the essence of the matter, as well as who is interested in it and what threatens Kolomoisky.
What is Kolomoisky accused of?
In May 2019, PrivatBank filed a lawsuit against the former owners of the bank, Igor Kolomoisky and Gennady Bogolyubov, in a Delaware state court (the lawsuit was filed by lawyers from US law firms Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan from Washington and Abrams & Bayliss) with charges of laundering $470 billion through fictitious firms around the world, including in the United States. At the same time, the government of Ukraine had to cover a deficit of $5,5 billion from the budget in order to keep the bank from bankruptcy.
The case was called "Optima Schemes" - after the name of a network of Kolomoisky's companies that acquired assets in the United States for allegedly laundered (in the United States - $ 622,8 million) and misappropriated income from corporate loans issued by PrivatBank.
At the same time, a similar case on the suit of PrivatBank from 2017 is being considered in the UK, and there is also a court order for the worldwide arrest of the oligarch's assets.
How the schemes worked
According to the lawsuit, the laundering was carried out as follows: firms owned by Kolomoisky and Bogolyubov issued loans in PrivatBank for fictitious purposes, after which the money was transferred in parts to the accounts of firms in Cyprus and from there it was transferred to the accounts of trusted persons in the United States, from which the money was invested in factories and real estate .
The return of money on loans from PrivatBank was also carried out according to a similar scheme: new loans were issued at the bank, which were similarly sent to the accounts of companies registered in Cyprus, and from there were transferred back in the form of repayment of debts - that is, the “return” of funds was made at the expense of the bank itself, which is largely formed from the contributions of his clients.
This led to an increase in the credit hole in the bank, whose bankruptcy was a matter of time. The schemes allegedly operated from 2006 to 2016. and were disclosed after the nationalization of the bank.
Materials on the topic
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American business empire
In the US, Kolomoisky and his partners own the largest company in the Cleveland office real estate market, Optima Management (its value is estimated at $250 million). With her help, a number of real estate purchases were made, including a 484-room hotel in Cleveland and a 21-story office building.
In addition, his business partners are Uri Leiber (a member of the Supervisory Board of Ukrnafta, among whose owners Kolomoisky is also listed) and Mordechai Korf, natives of the Florida Jewish community, with whom he invested in a number of processing enterprises in the United States, in a steel mill in Ohio, a steel cleaner plant in Virginia, to CC Metals and Alloys in Kentucky, the largest manufacturer and supplier of ferrosilicon in the United States, and others. Leiber and Korf appear in the case as accomplices in Kolomoisky's schemes.
What does Kolomoisky say?
According to the oligarch, "all investments in the United States of America were made from own funds received in 2007-2008 under an agreement with the Evraz company, and from the income of other businesses that were kept in PrivatBank."
Western business interests
The intensification of the case in the United States may indicate pressure on Zelensky and the expectation from him to reanimate the case in Ukraine in order to pass a sentence on him, since both groups of influence in the United States are opposed to Kolomoisky:
-informal parliamentary groups of Kolomoisky and “pro-Westerners” realizing the interests of the Democratic Party are conflicting in the “Servant of the People”;
- Representative of the US Democratic Party and Donald Trump's lawyer Rudolph Giuliani is also interested in reducing the influence of Kolomoisky and even called his "super dangerous".
Influential oligarchs within Ukraine are not beneficial to representatives of Western capital, who, within the framework of Ukraine's economic integration into the West, are interested in entering the Ukrainian market and redistributing spheres of influence. Therefore, there is an interest in the complete severing of ties between the president and the oligarchs who have influence on him, as well as in reducing the influence of Kolomoisky in Ukraine. And the possible laundering of money on an especially large scale by him turned out to be a great way to do this.
Risks for Kolomoisky
In the event of a verdict not in favor of Kolomoisky in the case of money laundering, his assets may be confiscated (most likely in favor of the United States, and not the injured party - Ukraine will have to fight for them separately in the courts), there is also a threat of fines and a long (up to several life sentences) imprisonment.
But the court decision in the United States does not mean that Kolomoisky, as a citizen of Ukraine, will be prosecuted in Ukraine or extradited to the United States. Everything will depend on the decisions of the Ukrainian courts and the political will of the country's leadership. Kolomoisky can be arrested in other countries if a US arrest warrant is issued, except for those in which he has citizenship: Ukraine, Israel and Cyprus.
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