Yaroslavl mayor Yevgeny Urlashov has been detained by the police, Svetlana Yefimova, the mayor's press secretary told Interfax Tuesday night. "Detained, that's true," she said.
Earlier the Yaroslavl region division of the Investigative Committee launched a criminal case against Urlashov, his deputy Dmitry Donskov, head of the city agency for municipal contracts Maxim Poikalainen and advisor to the mayor Alexei Lopatin.
Official spokesperson for the Investigative Committee in Yaroslavl region Kristina Guzovskaya told Interfax that the officials are suspected of committing an offense stipulated by Article 30 p. 3 and Article 290 p. 6 of the Criminal Code (planned large-scale extortion and bribery by a group of people).
"According to the investigation, the mayor of Yaroslavl and his subordinates between December 2012 and July 2, 2013 extorted a bribe in the amount of 14 million rubles ($425,000) from the director of a commercial entity from the sum transferred to the entity by way of payment for completed work," Guzovskaya said.
She said that the suspects threatened the director several times not to pay the money for work under the next contract, if he failed to fulfill their demands.
"Money in the amount of 14 million rubles meant as a bribe was given by the director of the commercial entity to a mediator who brought it to a place agreed upon in advance for handing over to the suspects," Guzovskaya said.
She said criminal proceedings were also launched with regard to a 34-year-old resident of Yaroslavl region who is suspected of mediating the bribery.
"Investigative measures are currently taken to establish all the circumstances. The investigation is considering the measure of restraint with regard to the suspects. The investigation of the criminal case continues," Guzovskaya added.
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