Ukraine’s State Bureau of Investigations has conducted a search of the home and office of Andriy Kobolyev, the former head of Ukraine’s state-owned oil and natural gas monopolist Naftogaz, the bureau said on Feb. 1.
Kobolyev headed Naftogaz from 2014 to 2021.
“The State Bureau of Investigations is conducting searches of the properties of the former Naftogaz CEO, as well as Ukrtransgaz and the managers of other private companies, in connection with a case involving the illegal dispossession of natural gas worth UAH 2.2 billion ($77.5 million),” the bureau said in a statement.
The SBI is investigating the theft of 305 million cubic meters of gas allegedly by the senior management of Ukrtransgaz, a gas transport company, and Naftogaz, in collusion with other individuals.
The case also involves Naftogaz settling 20-year-old debts with third parties.
“Naftogaz’s senior management, acting on a request from Ukrtransgaz, agreed to an amicable settlement with commercial structures, while lacking authority and grounds to do so,” the message on SBI’s website said.
“… the settlement deprived the state of 305 million cubic meters of gas; … experts estimate the loss at UAH 2.182 billion.”
The bureau alleges that Kobolyev, who served as the CEO of Naftogaz at the time, signed off on the settlement without clearing it with the company’s oversight board.
The Office of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine is overseeing the investigation.