Regional press survey for Saratov and the Saratov region, June 2012

Posted: July 13, 2012 at 7:01 pm, Last Updated: September 7, 2012 at 1:53 am

English Summary by Justin Cade


A few statistics

The region’s Prosecutor General’s office recently concluded an examination into the effectiveness of anti-extremism, anti-terrorism and anti-drug legislation over a five-month period in 2012.

In this period, investigators uncovered 158 violations of anti-extremism laws. Disciplinary measures were taken against 87 people. 438 violations of anti-terrorism laws led to disciplinary measures being taken against 124 guilty parties. 283 violations of anti-drug laws were reported with 114 citizens being charged.

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Concealment of Crimes

On June 28, Assistant Prosecutor General Sergei Zaitsev hosted a conference which was attended by subjects of the Privolzhsky Federal District’s Prosecutor General’s Office, leaders of the territorial divisions of the Investigation Committee of the Russian Federation as well as chiefs of the region’s Ministry of the Interior. The conference’s theme was the state of legality in guaranteeing constitutional rights to citizens in the pre-trial period in criminal proceedings.

Zaitsev claimed that a significant number of crimes was concealed by means of denial of admission as well as by the falsification of materials for pre-investigation inspections. The procuracy initiated 34 criminal cases on these grounds; more than one half of them will be conducted in the Republics of Tatarstan and Udmurtia as well as in the Saratov oblast.

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The investigative department of Saratov’s Lenin district concluded its criminal investigation into the dealings of a former authorized neighborhood police inspection point accused of exceeding its authority and ancillary fraud. According to evidence, an inspector, wishing to artificially improve his job efficiency without encumbering himself with the conducting of inspections and the searching of individuals, openly stole the property of local residents by violent means for almost two years, collecting bogus material which distorted the nature of his actual dealings with citizens at the checkpoints. The suspect plead innocent and denied stealing the items. A criminal case has been submitted to the Lenin district court for further investigation.

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The fight against corruption

On June 18, a roundtable bearing the title “Interaction of the Saratov Region’s Enterprises with Contractors and Suppliers. Small Business Development: New Forms and Approaches” was held at the Saratov Region’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The event was attended by representatives from the regional government, leaders of large business enterprises in the region as well as small and midsize businesses. The Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s senior vice president Yulia Nazarova opened the meeting by stating that the introduction of anticorruption procedures is still not sufficiently developed in Russia. Maksim Shikhalov, deputy minister of trade and energetics, supported her view, suggesting that regional directors create local councils for interaction with contractors and suppliers.

As was made clear during the discussion, there are many problems in interaction between large and small businesses. Boris Chernoded, director of Lafit Plus, LLC, discussed in detail the difficulties facing companies of such a small size in receiving contracts for work not requiring licensing. He also claimed that such contracts are always won by large firms who hire highly-qualified professionals. Dmitry Butenko, director of the Engels Tubular Factory, a private company, shared an absurd story from the other end of the spectrum. They simply could not find a contractor to complete a large-scale investment project with a budget of 60 million rubles.

Natalia Popkova, assistant minister of economic development and trade of the Saratov region, believes that the creation of a singular informational base for local enterprises, a so-called subcontracting center, will alleviate the problem.

Roundtable participants left the discussion of the opinion, that in order for companies to uphold anticorruption measures that they must continue to better their business reputations and increase the attractiveness of investment; smaller companies should consider new opportunities for the development of investment on the market.

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The head doctor of a Saratov region dispensary demanded a bribe of 2,000 rubles from a local resident in exchange for the hospitalization of a relative in a psychiatric ward. The suspect pled guilty and cooperated with investigators in full. He was pronounced guilty and faces a fine of 500,000 rubles and two years’ suspension from the job.

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Saratov officials arrested three female medical college instructors accused of accepting 50,000 rubles from students in exchange for good grades. The teachers are now being interrogated as suspects and are forced to remain in the city. A criminal case has been filed.

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Police arrested the director of the October district of Saratov’s housing and utilities infrastructure, Igor Agapov. According to evidence, Agapov solicited a bribe of 350,000 rubles from a friend in exchange for concluding a rent agreement for a property that could have been privatized. He was arrested upon receipt of the first half of the bribe and willingly confessed his crime. He is currently prohibited from leaving the city. According to the mayor’s office, no one would have guessed that Agapov, cited as a man of “fine character,” would have committed such a crime.

Source: (Газета «Коммерсантъ (Саратов)» № 117 за 2012 г.) 

According to evidence, on June 21, a highway patrolman covering the Atkarsky district of the Saratov oblast solicited a bribe of 1,000 rubles from a driver pulled over on the Nizhny Novgorod-Saratov highway. The driver reported the act to local law enforcement, the patrolman was arrested and fully confessed to the crime. An investigation is ongoing.

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A Saratov region highway patrolman accepted a bribe of 4,000 rubles from a driver going in the opposite direction of traffic and 300 rubles from a speeder. The officer is now under watch as further evidence is examined.

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The director of the Krasnopartizansky district’s House of Culture accepted a bribe in exchange for renting out the cultural establishment, a nonresidential complex of 573.7 square meters. She now faces a fine of 70,000 rubles with a suspension of working in municipal establishments for a year and a half.

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Murder involving abduction

On June 28, the Saratov District Court announced its verdict in the criminal case involving the kidnapping and murder of 11-year-old Ilnara Yagudina. Kadria Mizinova was found guilty on all counts earlier last month. She faces seven years imprisonment for knowingly kidnapping a minor, nine years imprisonment for perjury and 13 years imprisonment for knowingly murdering a minor with the intent of concealing another crime. Mizinova also must pay a fine of 1.5 million rubles to Ilnara Yagudina’s parents as compensation for their loss and subsequent emotional trauma.

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Organized Crime

Members of a multi-regional criminal group involved in the supply and sale of counterfeit bank notes in denominations of 1,000 and 5,000 rubles were arrested in June. Two of the criminals, a citizen of the Stavropol Krai and his accomplice, were arrested in an Engels restaurant for attempting to sell 500,000 counterfeit rubles. Two more members of the criminal group were arrested in the Stavropol Krai. Members of the group sold the counterfeit banknotes at 50% of their actual value and had been operating in the Saratov region since October 2011, participating in at least 20 fraudulent sales. As of the present, Ministry of the Interior employees are examining additional criminal acts committed by the group.

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Court hearings are closed on a criminal case initiated in August 2011 against an organized crime group which stole oil deposits from a commercial pipeline which belonged to Saratovneftegaz. Five members of the group were arrested by Engels district police in August of last year for stealing oil deposits worth over 300,000 rubles and were found to have stolen from Saratovneftegaz on two previous occasions. Four members of the group were sentenced to 3.5 to 5 years of imprisonment.

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Drugs and drug trafficking

Balashov narcotics officers arrested a 27-year-old man for selling marijuana and found additional doses of the drug on his person. Also arrested in Balshov was a 32-year-old woman, who was caught with nearly two kilograms of fresh marijuana. A 20-year old man was arrested on the street in Balakovo for carrying a bag with one kilogram of marijuana. A 26-year-old man in the Lenin district of Saratov for possessing nearly two kilograms of marijuana. A Saratov 35-year-old man was arrested for large-scale possession of marijuana; also found on his person was hash oil weighing 249.2 grams, considered a significant amount by police.

Citizens are also growing marijuana in courtyards of their apartment complexes. For example, the entire courtyard of a 23-year-old Ershov man was overgrown with the narcotic plant, which was promptly destroyed by narcotics police. It turned out that he was growing 480 hemp plants. Another Ershov resident, a 44-year-old man, was growing even more than the 23-year-old as 1,344 hemp plants were destroyed in his courtyard.

Source: (Газета «Богатей» № 21 от 21.06.2012 г.) 

On June 26, Engels narcotics officers uncovered the sale of 0.32 grams of JWH-018, a narcotic intended to be smoked. As a result, an Engels man was arrested. Upon inspection, police found another 0.25 grams of the drug on his person. He is now being tried with the illegal sale and possession of large volumes of narcotic substances.

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