Russian Economic Minister Ulyukayev charged with bribe-taking and extortion

A police officer by the Russian Investigative Committee building where Russian Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev is being questioned on suspicion of receiving a $2 million bribe

A police officer by the Russian Investigative Committee building where Russian Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev is being questioned on suspicion of receiving a $2 million bribe

Anton Novoderezhkin / TASS
Ulyukayev detained at the moment he was receiving a $2 million bribe

Russia’s Investigative Committee has brought official charges against Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev, spokeswoman Svetlana Petrenko has told TASS on Nov. 15.

"Earlier today investigators from of the special investigations department charged Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev with a criminal offense under part 6 of article 290 of the Criminal Code (gross bribe-taking and extortion by a person holding a civil service job), Petrenko said.

According to the investigators Ulyukayev had illegally demanded from a representative of the oil company Rosneft a cash bribe in exchange for a legal positive conclusion and appraisal regarding a deal in which Rosneft was to acquire the government-owned stake in the oil company Bashneft.

"The accused voiced threats he would use his official powers to create hindrances to the company’s operation in the future," Petrenko said.

Rosneft officials timely contacted the law enforcement agencies to lodge a complaint over Ulyukayev’s illegal actions on Nov. 14. Ulyukayev was detained at the moment he was receiving a $2 million bribe.

The investigators have asked court to select a restrictive measure against the accused.

The Committee said its investigators had no claims against Rosneft.

"It should be pointed out that the legality of Rosneft’s acquisition of Bashneft shares as such is not disputed by anyone. The deal is not a subject matter of investigation," Petrenko added.

Part 6 of article 290 envisages a fine worth from 80 to 100 times the amount of the bribe, with a ban on holding certain positions or engaging in certain activities, or from eight to 15 years in prison, with a fine of 70 times the amount of the bribe or without a fine.

Source: TASS

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