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SBU: Chernihiv deputy mayor charged with state funds embezzlement

by Dinara Khalilova June 19, 2023 8:21 PM 1 min read
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Ukraine's Security Service (SBU) reported on June 19 it detained Chernihiv deputy mayor on charges of embezzling Hr 30 million ($812 000) of state funds.

According to the investigation, the official had organized a scheme to appropriate budget funds allocated to purchase a new transformer for a local thermal power station. The station was damaged by Russian attacks last spring.

In July 2022, the equipment was purchased at a price twice the market value, the SBU wrote. The suspect has been remanded in custody and can be released on bail at Hr 32 million.

The investigation is ongoing. If convicted, the official will face up to 6 years in prison.

The SBU didn't name the suspect in its report, but according to Oleksandr Lomako, acting mayor of Chernihiv and the city council chairman, it was Viktor Herashchenko.

Herashchenko, who has managed the city's housing and energy sector, was responsible for the preparation for the next heating season. Lomako criticized the SBU's move, calling it "another attempt by officials from the center (Kyiv) to paralyze the work of the city council and its executive bodies."

In February 2023, Chernihiv Mayor Vladyslav Atroshenko was dismissed after a court declared him guilty of corruption and "conflict of interest." Atroshenko and some other Ukrainian officials called the court's decision politically motivated.

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