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Court seizes property of businessmen implicated in Defense Ministry corruption scandal

by The Kyiv Independent news desk January 11, 2024 2:51 PM 2 min read
(L) Ihor Hrynkevych, his children Olga and Roman, and his wife (R) Svitlana pose for a picture in vyshyvankas, Ukraine’s national embroidered shirts. (Facebook page of journalist Yevhen Plinskiy)
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Editor's note: This article was updated once the State Bureau of Investigation confirmed the property's seizure.

A Ukrainian court has seized the property of businessman Ihor Hrynkevych, who is under investigation for a corruption scheme connected to Defense Ministry contracts, the State Bureau of Investigation announced on Jan. 11.

The bureau did not explicitly mention Hrynkevych by name, but the facts of the case made it clear that he was the individual in question.

Hrynkevych was arrested on Dec. 30 while allegedly attempting to bribe a top official in the bureau. He is suspected of offering $500,000 to the official in exchange for the return of his confiscated property due to criminal proceedings.

Hrynkevych, as one of the leading suppliers for the Defense Ministry, won 23 tenders with his companies. According to the bureau, he failed to complete the contracts and caused financial damage of Hr 1.2 billion ($31.6 million) to the Defense Ministry. He faces up to eight years in prison if convicted.

Law enforcement authorities raided Hrynkevych’s home and his workplace. The directors and the offices of his companies were also searched under investigation for corruption in supply for the Defense Ministry.

According to the source, the court seized the real estate assets and cars of his family, as well as the property and bank accounts belonging to his companies.

The goods supplied by the Hrynkevychs' companies were of low quality and inappropriate for the Ukrainian Armed Forces to use, according to experts' conclusions, law enforcement authorities reported.

Since the beginning of the Russian full-scale invasion, Ukraine's Defense Ministry has been involved in several corruption scandals. The most notorious were related to the former Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov, one regarding inflated prices for food supplies and the other connected to low-quality winter jackets.

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