Moscow City Duma deputy Oleg Sheremetyev, accused of especially large-scale fraud, called himself a victim of the slander. On October 12, the Zamoskvoretsky court of the capital began to consider the criminal case of the parliamentarian. The deputy assures that he did not participate in the machinations with the awards of his assistant and did not appropriate the budget millions.
According to the investigation, Oleg Sheremetyev, a Moscow City Duma deputy from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, from November 2019 to February 2020, four times submitted to the parliamentary staff memos on bonuses for large sums of his assistant Irina Kuznetsova. Kuznetsova received money on her card, withdrew it from an ATM in the Moscow City Duma building on Strastnoy Boulevard and gave it to her boss. And he appropriated the “laundered” cash. According to investigators, the scam brought Sheremetyev more than 2 million rubles. If the MP is proven guilty, he faces up to 10 years in prison.
The victim in the case was initially recognized as the chief of the Duma apparatus, Alexander Taranov. However, from the first minutes of the trial, the roles changed: at the suggestion of the prosecutor, the Moscow City Duma itself became the victim. The state prosecutor told the details of the scheme imputed to Oleg Sheremetyev.
– From October 29 to November 19, 2019, Sheremetyev had a criminal intent to steal. He chose the budget funds allocated for the functioning of the Moscow City Duma as the subject of the criminal encroachment, – the state prosecutor emphasized, – Sheremetyev submitted four deliberately forged service notes on awarding Kuznetsova. For October and November 2019 for a million rubles, for December for 673 thousand rubles, for January 2020 – 363 thousand rubles, for February – 436 thousand rubles. According to the rules, a deputy of the capital’s parliament can have no more than four full-time assistants who are exclusively subordinate to him. He has the right to reward them for especially important and difficult tasks. Plus, a maximum of 40 volunteer assistants who work without wages can help the deputy.
As it sounded in court, Irina Kuznetsova got a job as a full-time assistant to Sheremetyev last year. She did not know about the boss’s machinations, so she regularly took money from the card for him. The deputy did not plead guilty.
“The accusation is absolutely absurd,” said Oleg Sheremetyev. – The prosecutor read out that I wrote a deliberately false memo. I believe these are defamatory statements. What kind of work is considered especially important is the prerogative of the deputy. Only the deputy decides whether the assistant deserves a prize and how much to award him. No one else has the right to rate it. The prosecutor’s office and the Investigative Committee exceeded their powers by taking over the right to assess.
According to the parliamentarian, the assistant, allegedly, is still a swindler herself: she harbored anger and slandered the boss. And all because Sheremetyev caught her in some machinations and fired her.
– There was no theft. I awarded Kuznetsov. At first, she worked very well and deserved a prize. She said in advance that she was going to use the prize to help residents of the area, – put forward an interesting version of Sheremetyev.
Another assistant to Oleg Sheremetyev, Kirill Anoshin, described Kuznetsova as a cunning, deceitful and wayward woman.
– She was there (in the office of the deputy – editor’s note) for the main one. What she wanted there, she did, she fenced herself off from everyone and spoke negatively about Sheremetyevo, – said Anoshin.
The accountant of the capital’s parliament, questioned in court by a witness, also spoke about the oddities of the distribution of money in the capital’s parliament. According to her, the salary of a Duma official is a complicated thing. In addition to the salary, the full-time assistant to the parliamentarian receives bonuses for special conditions that stimulate payments and bonuses. Whether or not to give a bonus is up to the deputy himself, for whom the assistant works. And most importantly, decisions on bonuses are never checked for validity by anyone.