Vladivostok Press Survey, July 2012

Posted: July 30, 2012 at 2:49 pm, Last Updated: September 7, 2012 at 1:53 am

 English Summary by Justin Cade

Murder for Hire

Sergei Krivorotov, General Director of the VladStroiZakazchik construction company, was found dead on Chaikovsky Street in Vladivostok the morning of June 13. He allegedly was accused of not paying his employees and a post mortem investigation uncovered numerous violations of labor laws, including failing to pay his employees. The procuracy is looking into the case for more information.

 

Organized Crime 

Crimes committed by organized groups are on the decline in Yakutia, the Amur region and the Primorsky and Khabarovsk Krais, but local law enforcement refuses to become complacent. In fact, in the Far Eastern Federal Okrug reported only 159 crimes committed by organized groups in 2011 compared to the 367 from 2010. Only 21 of the 159 crimes from 2011 were economic.

Six members of the “Primorsky Partisans” criminal band are being tried for a series of attacks on local police officers. Two of the attacks were fatal and many others resulted in serious injury. The “Partisans” are also accused of killing four drug dealers, committing a series of robberies, concealment of illegal weapons and banditism. The young men range from 18 to 23 years of age. Four of them are in police custody while the other two committed suicide at the time of their arrest on June 11, 2010 in Ussuriisk. An investigation yielded further information into the group’s past criminal activities such as rape and drug trafficking.

A criminal group from Chechnya was recently arrested in the First of May district of Vladivostok. Their past criminal activities included robbery, blackmail and takeovers of local businesses. A series of criminal charges have been filed.

A criminal group which included realtors and local businessmen was recently arrested in Khabarovsk. They are accused of offering residents of the city apartments for discounted prices and running away with their clients’ money. The leader of the group faces up to 20 years in prison.

 

Corruption

Dalrate, a 2011 project ranking the regions of the Russian Far East in terms of corruption, has declared the most corrupt region to be the Sakhalin Oblast, where 133 charges of corruption were filed last year. It’s worth noting that the Primorsky Krai ranks fourth with 114 corruption cases in 2011. Three government workers were tried for corruption. Bribes were accepted by 15 law enforcement officials, 14 health care providers and six educators.

Employees of the Vladivostok mayor’s office have been accused with paying for a 250,000-ruble tourist trip to Hong Kong from the city budget in March. Vice Mayor Liudmila Beliakova is among the accused. The bureaucrats claimed they were visiting an exhibition in Hong Kong when in reality it was a leisurely excursion. An investigation is ongoing. 

A highway patrolman was arrested in a Vladivostok suburb for soliciting a 50,000-ruble bribe from an intoxicated motorist. An investigation into the act has been announced and the court will soon decide its next move in the prosecution.

A respected professor in Vladivostok has been accused of accepting bribes in exchange for lenience to his students. He apparently asked for bribes of 2,000 rubles from students during the exam period in exchange for higher grades and was caught when 11 of his students reported him to the police. The professor was able to collect 13,000 rubles for his “services” and has been fired from the institution at which he worked. The Russian Investigative Committee of the Primorsky Krai is conducting a more thorough investigation.

The procuracy in Khabarovsk has filed a criminal charge against the former director of a penal colony settlement for abuse of powers. According to evidence, the director illegally signed contracts with heads of agriculture and local businessmen. The director indicated to his subordinates that they would have to pay the remaining costs involved with the contracts, which amount to over 23 million rubles. An investigation is ongoing.

Investigative departments in the Primorsky Krai have filed criminal charges against an employee of the regional State Labor Inspection for accepting a 30,000-ruble bribe in exchange for not reporting violations in production. He is currently under house arrest as an investigation is being conducted.

A criminal charge has been filed against the former director of the Kirov House for Mentally Handicapped Children in the Tymovsky District. The former director is accused of the misappropriation of pensions, accounting for over 10 million rubles.

 

Drugs and drug trafficking

Ussuriisk narcotics officers have already liquidated two large-scale plots of cannabis (over 7,000 square meters each) near the village of Turii Rog in the Khankaisky District of the Primorsky Krai. Experts assert that over one million bushes of cannabis were growing in the plots. Narcotics officers confiscated over 261 grams of hash oil in the village of Platono-Aleksandrovskoe, also in the Khankaisky District. Additionally, a bag containing over 2.7 kilograms of marijuana was confiscated from a resident of the Arkhangelo-Kirovsky District. All perpetrators have been arrested and an investigation is ongoing.

Employees of the Federal Drug Control Service in the Primorsky Krai confiscated 994.6 grams of a synthetic narcotic substance, a mix of JWH-022 and AM-2201. The drugs were sent from Moscow to the address of an unemployed female resident of Vladivostok. A criminal case has been filed and an investigation is ongoing.

A Kyrgyz citizen transported almost 200 grams of heroin to Kamchatka in his stomach and was arrested shortly after his arrival and subsequent medical treatment. Apparently the arrested man was bringing more heroin to a Kyrgyz contact who had been working in construction on the peninsula for quite some time. The construction worker offered 400,000 rubles in exchange for a fresh delivery from the courier. Both of the men face up to 20 years in prison for drug trafficking.

Fishermen on the southern shores of Kamchatka were caught growing cannabis in the gulley of their boat. When confronted by police, the men attempted to escape, but were ultimately arrested. The police also confiscated about 100 grams of marijuana from the boat. The grower faces a 1-to-3-year observation period.

On a train going from Moscow to Vladivostok, a 25-year-old woman from Tajikistan was arrested for transporting a large amount of heroin. Police discovered 5 kilograms of heroin in her purse with an additional compartment on the bottom. It was discovered that in Ussuriisk a 32-year-old woman convinced her to go to Moscow and back to obtain the drugs in exchange for a payment of 15,000 rubles.

 

Poaching

Nine Chinese citizens have been arrested for violating the Russian-Chinese border by fishing in the Amur and Ussuri Rivers. They will be fined 12,000 rubles.

Kamchatka border patrol arrested two Russian fishing boats suspected of poaching in the port of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatka. The boats contained illegal large-scale catches of crab and ray valued at an estimated 1.8 rubles on the first boat and 1,5 million on the other. The captains of both ships will be tried as criminals.

Inspectors uncovered over 20 tons of illegally caught live crab on a fishing vessel flying under a foreign flag on June 17 in the Sea of Okhotsk. The captain and nine crew members are Russian citizens while two crew members are Ukrainian.

The procuracy of the Khankaisky District has sentenced a man accused of illegal logging in the area to a year in prison with two years’ probation. According to evidence, the man chopped 14 Mongolian Oaks and 37 birch trees, accounting for 134,811 rubles worth of damage to the Russian economy. He is also required to repay the Russian Federation in full for the damage he caused.

 

Ecological crimes

Illegal deliveries of seafood continue to harm the ecology and economy of the Russian Far East. The undocumented export of seafood caught in Russian Far East waters to Japan, China and Korea accounts for $1.8 billion. Overfishing is also a serious threat to the ecological harmony of the Russian Far East and violators often go unpunished. Even though Russia signed an anti-poaching agreement with South Korea in 2009, poached crab continuously ends up on the Korean seafood market. No similar agreement has been signed with Japan, China or the United States.

 

Economic crimes

The criminal situation in the Far East can be characterized by a growth in economic crime, most often connected to the exploitation of the rich natural resources of the region. The fishing and lumber industries are hit the hardest; according to experts, the illegal export of lumber and ocean bioresources accounts for over seven billion rubles’ and 60 million rubles’ worth of damage respectively. Most of these illegal resources are exported to China and Japan. Experts state that in Russia innumerable problems and new threats to economic security arise on a daily basis and the government does nothing about them. The Far East faces a serious problem in safeguarding economic stability and the problem can only be solved by combining forces.

 

Fraud

Valentin Polyakov, director of the joint stock company Printek-Garant, has been accused of large-scale fraud by the Vladivostok procuracy. According to evidence, Polyakov is responsible for laundering over 15 million rubles. The criminal case has been sent to the Frunzensky District Court of Vladivostok for further investigation.

 

Cyber crime 

A 40-year-old man from Irkutsk claims he is the victim of deception by a Primorsky Krai swindler. The man enjoyed visiting social networks and entertainment sites as well as email on sleepless nights. Eventually the man was confronted with a deceptive proposal that suggested he could win a large sum of money and become a partner in a Libyan business project. The normally cautious man was enticed by the author’s supposed 3 million Euros reserved for a business venture and sent the $50,000 required for “unfreezing” the Libyan account to an unknown address. Upon realizing that he had been had, the Irkutsk man reported the incident to the police, who are currently examining documents and clarifying the conditions and details of the situation.

Write to traccc at traccc@gmu.edu