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Ex-governor Sergey Furgal reportedly under investigation for suspected misappropriation of state bank funds
The Russian Investigative Committee is actively looking into jailed former governor Sergey Furgal for alleged involvement in misappropriating funds from MSP Bank, reports Kommersant.
MSP Bank is 100 percent owned by the Federal Corporation for the Development of Small and Medium Businesses (which is in turn, included among the list of development institutions coordinated by the state development corporation VEB.RF). MSP Bank’s registered capital totals 24.24 billion rubles (about $328 million) and it takes 46th place among Russian banks in terms of assets. Within the framework of the reforms of development institutions in 2021, MSP Bank is set to merge with the mortgage and construction bank Dom.RF.
At the same time, MSP Bank Board Chairman Dmitry Golovanov has been placed under house arrest in connection with an ongoing criminal investigation into abuse of power.
The case file states that in March and August 2019, the bank issued two loans of nearly a billion rubles (about $13.55 million) to the Khabarovsk-based LLC “Skrap Far Ist” for the purchase of scrap metals. This firm is the trustee of Furgal’s ex-wife Larisa Starodubova’s share in the “Amurstal” metallurgy plant.
Skrap Far Ist managed to return just a little more than 230 million rubles ($3.12 million) on the loan, the case file says. State investigators believe that Golovanov deliberately showed indulgence towards businesses associated with Furgal.
In July 2020, MSP Bank filed for arbitration, demanding that Skrap Far Ist be declared bankrupt. A similar suit was filed against Amurstal itself. Larisa Starodubova was interrogated as a witness in a criminal case for the misappropriation of loans and her home was searched.
A source close to the ex-governor suggested that he could be charged as part of an economic investigation in the event that the main criminal prosecution is terminated due to the statute of limitations or the main suspect is acquitted by a jury court.
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