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Media: Ukrainian firm founder arrested over alleged tactical medical supplies to Russia

by Martin Fornusek January 5, 2024 7:12 PM 2 min read
The SBU carries out searches at Kyivguma on Jan. 4, 2024. (SBU/Telegram)
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A court arrested Anton Kravets, the founder and co-owner of the Ukrainian Kyivguma company, in connection to a case of alleged tactical medical equipment supplies to Russia, Ukrinform reported on Jan. 5, citing undisclosed sources in law enforcement agencies.

Later the same day, the Security Service of Ukraine's (SBU) press service confirmed in a comment for Interfax-Ukraine that "one of the Kyivguma company's founders" has been detained for 60 days without bail.

The SBU searched the premises of the Kyiv-based rubber goods producer, as well as the residences of the company's owners, on Jan. 4.

The SBU said on its Telegram channel it had exposed "one of the largest rubber and plastic producers in Ukraine" based in "Kyiv Oblast" for shipping tactical harnesses and bandages to Russia.

Between 2022 and 2023, the company supplied products worth over Hr 40 million ($1.05 million), the Security Service said. The goods were allegedly transported via an "illegal route" running through European countries to Russia.

Some of the products that ended up in Russia were then provided to Russian soldiers fighting in Ukraine, the SBU said.

Kyivguma's director and co-owner, Andrii Ostrohrud, confirmed on social media that the company was searched by law enforcement officers but denied the accusations.

"Since February 2022, we have completely stopped cooperation with the aggressor country! There has not been a single delivery!" Ostrohrud said.

The director said that European companies named in the SBU's case are Kyivguma's long-term customers, who re-sell the Ukrainian company's supplies as their own products elsewhere in the EU and the Middle East.

He had also denied that the medical supplies supplied to these companies would be military grade.

One of Ukrinform's sources said that contrary to the company's statements, enough evidence has been collected confirming supplies to Russia. These include invoices and direct correspondence with Russian clients, according to the source.

"A lot of interesting information was also found in the computer of Kyivguma's general director, Andrii Ostrohrud," the source claimed.

In November, an investigation by the independent Russian news outlet Important Stories claimed that several Ukrainian companies were providing military parts to Russia amid the full-scale war.

The state-owned enterprise Ukrainian Defense Industry (UkrOboronProm) denied the report.

Investigation: Italian company makes sure Russian war machine has the steel it needs
Editor’s note: This story was published by the Dutch investigative outlet Follow The Money on Dec. 14. The Kyiv Independent contributed reporting to this story and is republishing it with permission. Key facts: * After Russia seized Crimea and unleashed the war in the Donbas in 2014, the Italian…
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