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Anti-Corruption Court closes 'Rotterdam plus' case

by Martin Fornusek October 9, 2023 12:49 PM 2 min read
A miner works at a coal mine in the Dnipro Oblast on June 9, 2023.
A miner works at a coal mine in the Dnipro Oblast on June 9, 2023. (Photo credit: Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images)
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The High Anti-Corruption Court of Ukraine closed the so-called "Rotterdam plus" case involving an allegedly unreasonable increase in energy prices between 2016-2019, the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office (SAPO) reported on Oct. 9.

The judges justified the decision by the "expiration of the pre-trial investigation period after the person was served with a notice of suspicion."

SAPO's Prosecutor did not agree with the court's decision and will take the case to the Court of Appeals.

The investigation, led by the National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU), centered around the so-called "Rotterdam plus" formula, a method that Ukraine used to set electricity prices between 2016 and 2019.

The formula was used to calculate market prices for electricity. According to the investigators, it included non-existent costs, namely the prices for transporting coal to Ukraine from the Dutch port of Rotterdam.

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In 2019, NABU investigators accused six people – including officials of the state energy regulator and representatives of the DTEK energy company owned by wealthy businessman Rinat Akhmetov –  of overcharging electricity consumers by Hr 39 billion ($1 billion) throughout the period of the formula's operation.

The case was closed several times as "illegal and unfounded" but was reopened again in September 2022, after which 15 more people were added to the list of suspects.

NABU and SAPO sent the first case of six suspects in the "Rotterdam plus" case to court in March 2023.

‘Rotterdam plus’ case reopened by top prosecutor
The infamous “Rotterdam plus” case is being reopened by Ukraine’s new top anti-corruption prosecutor. The case’s closure was “illegal and unfounded,” according to Oleksandr Klymenko, the new head of the Special Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office (SAPO), appointed in July after the position was vaca…

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