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Court denies Kolomoisky's petition to leave pretrial detention for health reasons

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk November 10, 2023 7:17 PM 1 min read
Ukrainian business tycoon and one of Ukraine's most famous oligarchs, Ihor Kolomoisky, was arrested after being suspected of fraud at a court hearing in Kyiv on Sept. 2, 2023. (Maxym Marusenko/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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A petition by oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky to change the terms of his pretrial detention to house arrest was denied by a Kyiv court on Nov. 10, his lawyer told Ukrinform.

The judge refused to grant Kolomoisky's the right to be released from pretrial detention. The oligarch cited health issues as the reason for his plea. Kolomoisky did not comment on the court's decision.

The court sentenced Kolomoisky to an additional month of pretrial detention on Oct. 27, extending his stay in jail until at least Dec. 2.

Kolomoisky, one of Ukraine's most well-known business tycoons and billionaires, was arrested on Sept. 2 for alleged fraud and money laundering related to his oil and gas holdings.

The National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU) handed Kolomoisky additional criminal charges on Sept. 7, accusing him of embezzling $250 million from PrivatBank in 2015.

Following the new charge, the Shevchenkivskyi district court increased the oligarch's bail from Hr 509 million ($14 million) to Hr 3.89 billion ($106 million).

The prosecutor said this was in part due to the fact that the oligarch had lost his Ukrainian citizenship and is now a citizen of Israel, which creates a risk of him hiding abroad.

Kolomoisky used to control Ukrtatnafta, Ukraine's largest refining company, until it was seized by the government in November, citing it as being a critical asset during martial law.

The company reportedly refused to pay Hr 3.2 billion ($90 million) in taxes last year.    

He also owned over 40% of Ukrnafta, an oil and gas company, through multiple smaller companies in his orbit. The Ukrainian state seized this company last year as well.

In 2016, the government also nationalized PrivatBank, the country's largest bank - while Kolomoisky co-owned it. The bank's fraudulent activities left a $5.5 billion hole in its balance sheet.

Kolomoisky also faces various lawsuits and charges in the U.K., U.S., Israel, and Ukraine.

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