13 June, 08:33 PM

Ukrainian prosecutors seize assets linked with former defense minister’s family

Ukraine’s Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) has seized freight cars and other assets belonging to the Aurum Group, a company owned by the daughter of former Defense Minister, Pavlo Lebedev, PGO said in a statement on June 13.

645 railway cars, worth about 650 million hryvnias ($22 million), belonging to the family of the former official, who is suspected of state treason, have been seized in the process of a criminal investigation.

"The prosecutor's office arrested and handed over to ARMA (Agency for Investigation and Management of Assets — ed.) 645 cars belonging to the family of the former minister of defense of Ukraine," the PGO announced.

The PGO did not name the former government official but stated that the ultimate beneficial owner of a number of enterprises is the family of the former minister of defense of Ukraine, who served in that position from 2012 to 2014.

"They are engaged in the supply and sale of goods in Russia, as well as production equipment for the defense-industrial complex of the aggressor state," the Office of the Prosecutor General said.

The post of defense minister at the time was held by Lebedev, who fled Ukraine after the self-imposed exile of former president Viktor Yanukovych. His daughter, Alyona Lebedeva, is the owner of the Aurum Group, an industrial and investment group that manufactures and operates freight cars and invests in other industries.

NV Business has sent a request to the press service of the Aurum Group and but did not receive a response before publication.

"At the request of the prosecutor's office, another property of this financial-industrial group of enterprises and their owners has been seized,” the PGO added.

“In particular, 30 land plots and 30 real estate units were seized, including 6 integral property complexes and the corporate rights of 22 business entities.”

According to the prosecutors, investigators from the Kyiv National Police Department, with the operational support of the SBU Security Service of Ukraine’s Department for the Protection of National Statehood, are conducting a pre-trial investigation into criminal proceedings over actions committed with the purpose of forcible change or overthrow of the constitutional order or seizure of state power, change of borders of the territory or state border of Ukraine and appropriation of property (Part 3 of Article 110-2 and Part 3 of Article 191 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine).

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