Corruption case in 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games
The Administrative department of Presidential affairs has assigned 800 million on already build road, ready foundation and walls for governmental sanatorium in Sochi. Investigation by Novaya Gazeta
It’s been over a month since Valery Morozov, the Chairman of Board of “Mosconverseprom” PJSC has denounced the officialdom of Administrative department of Presidential affairs (ADPA) with bribery and corruption, but so far there is no information available from law machinery about the case current status: whether it actually exists, whether any investigation is being performed or if it has already been brought to a quiet close.
Let us remind that initially in his interview to the English "The Sunday Times" and to “Novaya Gazeta” Morozov informed that for several years he had been paying kickbacks to a highly-ranked ADPA official who demanded 12% of 1.5 billion roubles’ contract cost for reconstruction of “Primorsky” building of “Sochi” sanatorium (this will be a governmental residence for the time of the Olympic Games).
In his comments to Russian radio networks Valery Morozov specified the name of the official person, according to him this being a deputy director of ADPA capital development department, Vladymyr Leshchevsky. Later in his interview to “Novaya Gazeta” (No. 59 dd. June the 4th) Valery Morozov described the details and prehistory of this conflict. He made it known that there was an official investigatory experiment performed in regard to Vladymyr Leshchevsky, where, recorded and observed by operative agents, the businessman handed the official the last settlement of the bribe. But operative agents decided not to detain the ADPA official under a quasi-reference to the absence of a corresponding order.
And 15 million roubles assigned by Morozov out of his own pocket for the purpose of the experiment have vanished together with the official person himself. Later on the businessman did manage to lodge the complaint with Vladymyr Leshchevsky and operative agents to the President, Dmitry Medvedev, who has instructed the case check to the Office of the Procurator General. The oversight body has partially acknowledged the complaint validity and passed materials to the Russian Investigative Committee which was supposed to issue a resolution on either rejection or bringing a criminal case. So far – nothing but silence in this respect.
For all this period we continued our investigation and have revealed new curious details of the manner the key Sochi Olympic facilities are being constructed and the ways budget billions are spent.
“Mosconverseprom” was the general contractor of “Primorsky” building reconstruction in “Sochi” sanatorium. In 2006 the company signed a government contract with Administrative department of Presidential Affairs to the sum of 1.5 billion roubles. One of the contract points stipulated for its further indexation in consideration of inflation.
By 2009 the sum of 1.5 billion roubles was drawn and “Mosconverseprom” turned to the “Directorate of construction and reconstruction of federal authorities’ Olympic facilities” Federal state unitary enterprise (FSUE), which acted as a customer, with request for indexation and assignment of additional financing. But it was at that very moment that the conflict between Morozov and Vladymyr Leshchevsky came to its highest point, and instead of actual contract index-linking ADPA decided to hold a new tender on contract works performance for reconstruction completion.
The “Mosconverseprom” Chairman of Board assumed this was done in order to withdraw them from the object and deprive of financing. Morozov recalls that he was purposefully requesting Vladimir Kozhin, head of the department of Presidential affairs, whether the new tender meant that ADPA was terminating its cooperation with the company. The reply he received was: no, a new tender is a mere matter of form, and you shall remain within the object.
As a result, “Mosconverseprom” was not admitted to tender participation. People of the company think that they were purposefully given the documentation which was different from that of other tender participants, and thus the application was invalid.
The tender was won by “RF ADPA Construction association” FSUE and a contract to the sum of ca. 2 billion roubles was signed, this sum at over 800 million exceeding the one “Mosconverseprom” wanted to obtain, with consideration of indexation, and the one it was planned to announce for the tender. Where does such substantial difference come from?
We have scrutinized the technical specification of the tender won by “RF ADPA Construction association” FSUE and were surprised by the fact it contains duplicates of works which had been already performed by “Mosconverseprom” earlier, with takeover protocols signed and money paid by Administrative department of Presidential affairs!
For example, the new technical specification contained works on reverse engineering and erection of new sea walls, on soil substitution, on road laying and dismantling of foundation back walls’ structure … While according to respective protocols (copies are available in editorial office) within 2006-2009 the road was laid, and the sea walls were dismantled with new ones erected on their place, and foundation structures were demounted.
Well, of course one can admit that a new contractor can destroy the road and lay a new one, blow up the foundation and make its own one, crash down the wall and mount other ones, but even in consideration of specific character of Russian construction process such things are difficult to believe in.
In total the ‘duplicates” of the technical specification count up to 590 million roubles. Moreover, the technical brief contains some other additional works which had been also previously done by “Mosconverseprom” and reimbursed by ADPA (ca. to the sum of 240 million roubles).
If to sum up the value of these repeatedly included works it shall make exactly the 800 million which enables the following assumption: the substantial difference between the real contract price and the one that shall be paid by the Administrative department of Presidential Affairs has been stipulated by these “duplicate” works which seem like no one is going to perform.
Where will these 800 million go to?
The tender winner, “RF ADPA Construction association”, has signed a subcontract agreement with “Harwinter” LTD. In “Mosconverseprom” they know that the subcontract agreement was signed to the sum of ca. 1 billion roubles. As told by Valery Morozov, the ADPA officials, including Vladimir Leshchevsky, more than once insisted that he should cooperate with “Harwinter” managed by citizens of former Yugoslavia republics. The question Morozov asked himself in this respect was: if the ADPA officials are so zealous in their request of signing contracts with “Yugoslavian” companies, is it possible that they are bound by some commitments?
“Novaya Gazeta” has managed to find out that some family members of ADPA capital development deputy director, Vladymyr Leshchevsky, have actual indirect connection with construction companies of former Yugoslavia, including the “Harwinter”.
In early 2000th Vladimir Leshchevsky used to work in “Malakhit” insurance company and in “Glavmosstroy” organizations, and later on, in ca. 2002, he came to the Administrative department of Presidential affairs. Prior to his official governmental appointment Leshchevsky was a cofounder of “Investproject” LTD. real estate company, together with “Extrastroy” LTD. which is registered in Troitsk. The sole owner of this company was Lidiya Leshchevskaya, the wife of Vladimir Leshchevski, while his son Vladimir Vladimirovitch Leshchevsky was its General director.
After senior Leshchevsky moved to the Administrative department of Presidential affairs, his son was also engaged in construction company “ABS Construction” LTD. This firm was a daughter-company to “Russian Electronics” Holding (RUSEL), founded and managed by Nenad Popovitch, citizen of former Yugoslavia. Today Popovitch is the president of “ABS Electro” holding which is engaged in power engineering, oil, gas and metallurgy spheres.
The general director of “Harwinter” LTD., the company that was in signature of the big subcontract agreement, that Valery Morozov suspects of having informal connection to ADPA officialdom, is named Slobodan Obradovitch; the company constitutors, according to Unified State Register of Legal Entities (USRLE), are Anastasiya Kruglyakova and a citizen of Serbia, Rade Malbasha.
According to federal register of state contracts, the Administrative department of Presidential affairs is the only governmental customer of “Harwinter”. Starting from 2007 ADPA has signed eight contracts with this company to the total sum of 3.6 billion roubles. But the register does not count for subcontract agreements, and according to information from Valery Morozov they are numerous, thus actual relationships between “Harwinter” and ADPA can amount to several dozens billion roubles.
There was also a company registered in Moscow, being almost a complete namesake of “Harwinter” – the “Harwintar” LTD. It was managed by Rade Malbasha while among the constitutors there were that very Serbian citizen Slobodan Obradovitch and a “Master Ideal” LTD., one f its major shareholders being Ivan Novikov. Novikov also occupied managing position in “RUSEL” holding which owned the “ABS Construction” – the one where the son of the ADPA official, Leshchevsky junior, used to work. Besides Ivan Novikov is a shareholder in numerous companies. One of them was a “Florent” LTD. which later was registered as a constitutor of that “ABS Construction”.
In 2007 “Harwinter” bought out 70% of Belgrade power engineering company “Thermoelectro” (it is engaged in network maintenance as well as equipment and electric power supply to former Yugoslavia countries). It was Serbian deputy prime-minister Bozhidar Dzhelich who was happy to inform this to Russian mass-media, having brought the deal as an example of establishment of intergovernmental business affair.
The new major stockholders appointed Neboysha Vlahovitch as a new managing director, him being for that moment also a deputy general director of “Harwinter” in Moscow. Vlahovitch used to tell Serbian mass media that the Russian company did plan to engage new employees and invest millions of Euro into “Thermoelectro”.
But for this, Neboysha Vlahovitch was also in charge of “ABS Construction” contracting company where the son of the ADPA capital development deputy director, Vladymyr Leshchevsky-junior, was employed. Today, according to SCRIN database of Russian enterprises, Neboysha Vlachovitch together with Slobodan Obradovitch and Rade Malbasha are constitutors of “Harwinter” in Saint Petersburg.
“Harwinter” participated in restoration of Strel’ny Palace of congress timed to the 300th anniversary of Saint Petersburg and also in that of the Synod where Constitutional court is situated, while Slobodan Obradovitch in 2006 obtained a personal honorary mention from the RF President for participation in preparation of the Russia – European Union meeting.
…Our sources in Investigative Committee of the Prosecutor General Office have informed that notwithstanding journalistic skepticism the materials of the investigative experiment (wiretaps, video) which, as Valery Morozov says, show him passing money to Vladimir Leshchevsky, are not lost but preserved in complete and so far the investigative officers are waiting for the starting signal from above-ranked administration in order to commence their work.
Frankly speaking, it is hard to believe in this, but still, in case the starting signal comes, we are ready to assist the investigation process and provide materials on the episodes mentioned above.
P.S. So far no comments are received from the Administrative department of Presidential affairs.
From Valery Morozov’s interview given to “Novaya Gazeta” (n. 59):
- Everything took place on June 24, year 2009, in “Slivovitsa” restaurant. I had a hidden camera on me, there was a taping microphone hidden in the flower vase and there were two operative officers sitting at the next table who were also making video records. Leshchevsky came and started to assure that everything would be good with me and “Mosconverseprom”. Then he took the package with money and left, while I went to the gentlemen’s to give the equipment to the operative investigator. I came back to my table and suddenly in a minute Leshchevsky came back: he wanted to wait until the rain subsides. Together we took some more beer and then he left. But nobody made attempts to detain him.
Next morning I called the Investigative Bureau and was told that unfortunately they had not received any detention order. You know, I have a feeling right now that all this investigatory experiment was a kind of game. I think they made records of Leshchevsky only for the purpose of “shaking him up” themselves.
- On July 20 2010, Dmitry Medvedev demanded Russian General Prosecutor Yuriy Chaika to check the information in the present article and to report him about the results (http://novgaz.ru/data/2010/081/24.html ).
- On August 11 2010, Investigative Comitee of General Prosecutor Office started a criminal case on Vladimir Leshevsky accusing him in recieving bribes.