RUSSIA MONITOR

Date: 7 June 2017

Anti-corruption Showcase

Federal Security Service have detained more senior officials accused of corruption. This is another revealed bribery case at the regional rather than central level. The arrests inscribe themselves perfectly in an anti-corruption narrative of the central authorities, which is expected to step up its ostentatious fight against corruption ahead of the upcoming presidential elections.


© KARL-JOSEF HILDENBRAND PAP EPA

The Investigative Committee of Russia has detailed a deputy governor of Kursk Region in a bribery case. 62-year-old Vasily Zubkov presided over the regional security committee and supervised the regional construction regulatory authorities. The investigators accuse Zubkov of taking a bribe of over 1 million rubles (17 thousand dollars) from a local construction company in 2015 in exchange for assistance in the unlawful commissioning of an apartment block by developers. The bribe was in the form of real property, not cash. Three more persons were detained in the same bribe case. The Deputy Governor was arrested in Kursk and immediately taken to Moscow.

Vasily Zubkov is a former general. Since the middle of 1990s, he presided over the regional council of emergency ministry. For a short term, he also simultaneously served as a Deputy Governor. He left his service when he became a general in 2013. The Zubkov case might also hit the current Governor of Kursk Region, Alexander Mikhaylov. Much will depend on whether the investigation reveals any incriminating evidence against Alexander Mikhaylov. 65-year-old Governor can be hardly called a notorious or controversial figure in the political scene. He was in office since 2000.

On 4th June, investigators detained the Deputy Governor of Vladimir Oblast, Jelena Mazanko, who is suspected of taking bribes worth at least 3 million rubles. Mazanko allegedly meddled with government contracts for renovation of regional administration buildings. Her detention may herald some further action against Svetlana Orlova, the serving Governor, who declared Mazanko’s arrest was a provocation.

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