Place Your Bets: Oleksandr Klymenko, Maksym Slutskyi, Artur Zolotarevskyi

“The companies of fugitive ex-minister Klymenko may be involved into money laundering schemes,” - the investigation reports.

According to the Military Prosecution, Oleksandr Klymenko, while holding the office of the Minister of Revenues and Duties had withdrawn about 800 million dollars out of Ukraine. The range of the offshore companies took part in that scheme transferring money through the European banks. Currently, the investigation has reached a stalemate. Nevertheless, recently, while conducting another investigation, the same companies have appeared in the other scheme related to the money laundering by the German companies.

In July 2017, the substantial searches held by the Main Investigation Department of the National Police, together with the Prosecutor General’s Office, took place in Gulliver Commerce and Business Center in Kyiv. The officers conducted investigation activity on the floors leased by the companies affiliated with Oleksandr Klymenko, the ex-Minister of Revenues and Duties; among such companies are Vesti Media Holding Company, Unison Group of Companies and two asset management companies.

After finishing the searches, Chief Military Prosecutor Anatolii Matios claimed that the damage to Ukrainian taxpayers caused by Klymenko was in order of 788 million dollars. He stressed that the fugitive ex-minister had withdrawn those funds to the tax havens and, as the investigation presumed, purchased 78 apartments, 28 offices, 5 houses, 11 land plots, 23 automobiles and 3 floors of the Gulliver Business Center as well as 1000 rail freight cars. However, as a consequence, the offshore case died down.

The abovementioned companies, being involved in the anti-corruption cases investigated by the Military Prosecution, have appeared in the other schemes related to Artur Zolotarevskyi, an entrepreneur from Dnipropetrovsk. Consequently, the investigation found Klymenko’s companies had participated in the money laundering scheme, supposedly to be illegally received by the German business entities.

It is particularly remarkable that despite the German names of the companies and the German residence registration of their nominal and real owners, the article runs for Ukrainian-born individuals.

The money laundering scheme itself includes several companies. Thus, the company X borrows certain amount of money from the other company (Y). Then, the lender (company Y) sells the right to demand the loan to the third party – company A. The latter sells this right to the company B and so on and so on. As a final result, the borrower himself or the company under his control purchases this debt with the borrower having an opportunity not to pay out his debts since he never demands it from himself. At the same time, the company X does not pay the income tax (the loan receipt and its redemption are indicated as losses in the tax reports) and thus actually cheats the state and its budget for the sum in question.

According to the investigation data, the company X is A.M. Verwaltungsgesellschaft mbH (Frankfurt am Main) conducting the commercial real estate management. Pursuant to the data from the open information sources, Maskym Slutskyi, the former Ukrainian citizen, and now obviously the citizen of Germany, runs the company. He is one of the persons involved into the investigation concerning the financial transactions performed by Artur Zolotarevskyi as well as the active public supporter of Viktor Yanykovych, even after the latter had escaped.

The investigation reports in 2008 the company ran by Slutskyi received the loan in order of 2 million dollars from two Cyprus bubble companies - Dardo Trading Ltd и Jenifex Participation Limited, registered in Nicosia. The ultimate beneficiaries of those companies are Yuliia Shchukina and Vladyslav Kravets respectively, both being the citizens of Ukraine. According to the sources from the law enforcement bodies, this all is about the famous bankers – at that time Shchukina was in charge of the Premium Bank owned by Sergey Dumchev, and Kravets was the Head of the NRB Ukraine, subsequently purchased by Sberbank. The investigation records state that the said 2 million dollars may have been illegally received from the budget of Ukraine.

The investigation presumes that the company ran by Slutskyi has been using for 5 years the funds of the primary lenders without paying out the debts and in this regard without indicating income in the tax reports for the German fiscal authorities. However, in 2015 the German authorities finally turned their attention to the suspicious business bringing revenues, but allegedly giving nothing to the federal treasury.

In 2012-2018 the scheme of the A.M. Verwaltungsgesellschaft mbH debt resale has been realized. The companies of Shchukina and Kravets seemed to have resold the debt to Maxi Services Ltd. (registered in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines). Then, the companies - New Thornhill Trading inc. и Margolex Limited (indicated in investigation records as fly-by-night companies) appeared and seemed to have repurchased the right to demand the loan from the Maxi Services, and subsequently seemed to have resold that debt one by one. As the investigation records state, and as a result Margolex resold that debt to Elizaten Management from the United Kingdom.

Special attention shall be drawn to that company since its founder, as excepted, is also a citizen of Ukraine – Olena Gyellyer, the resident of Dnipro (the maiden name is Kaplan) – whose blood sister is Yuliia Kaplan, the wife of Maskym Slutskyi. Thus, Slutskyi got back his debt and now he may either write it off or “pay it off”.

The specialists in tax law emphasize this scheme is typical and maybe even illegal for money laundering since it results in long-lasting business understatement of profit.

Consequently, due to the scheme, described above (see documents at the end of the article), A.M. Verwaltungsgesellschaft mbH company, as indicated in the investigation records, at first received to its accounts two million dollars claimed to be obtained illegally. It is presumed that Maskym Slutskyi, the Company’s Director, legalize the said two million dollars by multiple transfers of the right to demand which was finally purchased by the company under his control. Now, A.M. Verwaltungsgesellschaft mbH may use the debt for its artificial understatement of revenues and thus evade taxes.

It is worth mentioning the names of two other companies (two of three) assisting Slutskyi, Kaplan and Gyellyer in realization of the whole optimization process. As it is said in the investigation records, the point is about Margolex Limited in particular; this company, together with Transhell Financial Inc, is involved in the offshore case of the ex-Minister of Revenues and Duties mentioned at the very beginning. For the purposes of the present case, the Prosecutor General’s Office adverted to Latvia with a view to getting access to the companies’ accounts with the Latvian banks. The results of such a request popped up in one of the decisions of the Pechersk District Court.

While conducting the pre-trial investigation on criminal proceeding records No. 42018000000000563, it appeared that Oleksandr Klymenko has registered to his father the IDP FOUNDATION company in Lichtenstein which began to control other Klymenko’s companies. That was the company through which from 2011 to 2014 the abovementioned 788 million dollars claimed to have been transferred; it took control over the real estate purchase and investing funds into the liquid assets.

According to the court judgement, during April-June of 2015 Transhell Financial Inc has transferred more than 2 million dollars to the accounts of another offshore company. And vice versa, Margolex received money on its accounts. The investigators affirm both companies are under direct control of Oleksandr Klymenko. For the record, that was Hong Kong from which the consignment of equipment for mining was carried out and seized at Borispil airport several years ago.

The third company - New Thornhill Trading inc. – is the Panamanian offshore company held by Artur (Natan) Zolotarevskyi as indicated in the investigation records. The investigators presume that Zolotarevskyi runs his forex pyramid by means of this offshore company. As it was stated above, it is possible illegal business activity may be really conducted in Dnipro city under his auspices, having 55 employees and with payroll budget being 850 000 hryvnias per month. Besides, it is possible that willful evasion from taxes takes place: both from taxes on income of the business owner and his employees and from respective income taxes to the state budget.

Furthermore, a range of other companies owned by Dnipro patron have repeatedly appeared in cases on the bubble entrepreneurship, tax debts and participation in tax mitigation schemes. As it was previously mentioned, Artur (Natan) Zolotarevskyi himself might be one of the pawns in a game played by Oleksandr Klymenko related to the organization of smooth running of the cash-out transaction platforms and withdrawal of money to his assets abroad.

The connection between Zolotarevskyi and Slytskyi, between Kaplan and her blood sister Gyellyer may be found through their joint business activity and through Vladyslav Izrailit, the business partner of Slutskyi. Zolotarevskyi held the EuroZahid LLC, together with Izrailit, which was accused of a variety of criminal offenses on tax evasion and was involved into the investigation on money laundering participation in Germany and Switzerland.

The instrument being applied hereto is the General Power of Attorney by Gyellyer

The question is that Zolotarevskyi indicated the present company being a source of income for establishment of the CROWN RESOURCES SA Authorized capital (Swiss Management Company) in 2017. The law of Switzerland may enable this only if there is sufficient amount of the current legal revenues for establishment of the Authorized capital. As the investigation records indicate, Zolotarevskyi overstated the profit indexes of the companies from which the funds were transferred to Switzerland, and thus the local Government was flagrantly cheated of.

Izrailit, together with well-known Yulia Kaplan, runs Kapis GmbH in Frankfurt am Main.

Therefore, the companies of Oleksandr Klymenko were found to participate in the schemes for the optimization of payments between Slutskyi and Izrailit and also their friend Artur (Natan) Zolotarevskyi in Germany.

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