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Court increases bail for oligarch Kolomoisky to $105 million following fresh charges

by Dinara Khalilova September 16, 2023 10:50 AM 2 min read
Ukrainian business tycoon and one of Ukraine's most famous billionaires, 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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Kyiv's Shevchenkivskyi district court has increased bail for oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky from Hr 509 million ($14 million) to Hr 3.8 billion ($105 million) after he was handed new charges in the PrivatBank case, Suspilne reported on Sept. 15.

According to Ukraine's Security Service (SBU), Kolomoisky in 2013-2014 embezzled around $157 million from PrivatBank, which he co-owned at the time. This is the latest in a series of accusations made against the infamous oligarch since the start of September.

A prosecutor of the Bureau of Economic Security asked the court to set the new bail at the same amount Kolomoisky had allegedly embezzled, Suspilne wrote.

The prosecutor also said that the oligarch had lost his Ukrainian citizenship and is now a citizen of Israel, which creates a risk of him hiding abroad.

Last year rumors swirled that President Volodymyr Zelensky had stripped Kolomoisky of his Ukrainian citizenship, although that was never confirmed by the presidential office.

Government advisor Serhiy Leshchenko, however, recently published photographs of court documents listing the oligarch as a citizen of Israel and Cyprus.

Oligarch Kolomoisky is behind bars. How did he get there and can he find a way out?
Ihor Kolomoisky’s recent arrest is the latest episode in a prolonged, hard-fought slide from grace for one of Ukraine’s most notorious oligarchs. At his height, he governed a region, controlled huge chunks of multiple industries, made good use of his massive TV network, and a cadre of loyal politic…

Kolomoisky's lawyer, in turn, argued that the requested bail is "unreasonable" as the prosecutor allegedly did not provide any evidence that the oligarch could pay such an amount, Suspilne reported. The lawyer also called the risks "unfounded" since Kolomoisky is already in custody.

On Sept. 2, Kolomoisky was arrested until Oct. 31, with the initial bail set at $14 million. Earlier the same day, the SBU searched the oligarch's properties and charged Kolomoisky with 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.

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