How Firtash and Seva Kiev "sawed" Russian-Turkmen gas
02.09.2020 18:33

The court of Cyprus seized all movable and immovable property of the Ukrainian billionaire Dmitry Firtash by almost $ 46 million at the same time, according to the" Kommersant", the interim measures also affected the head company of the oligarch Group DF Holdings Limited, which actually manages all the business of Mr. Firtash. The reason was the claim of the Russian VTB Bank, which owed two structures of the businessman-PJSC " Ukrainian chemical products "and LLC" Titanium investments", which are the owners of a number of plants in the Crimea. The total amount of debt is more than 2.5 billion rubles. This is not the first problem Firtash is linked to Russia. In Russia, he is better known as an active participant in the "gas" schemes 90-ies. His partner then was "authority" Semyon Mogilevich (don Simeon, Seva Kievsky) . The last and now didn't get off "feeding trough", allowing to receive the state billions. As has been said that Mogilevich is the unofficial co-owner of Mercator, which handles the harvesting technique. Every year the subjects of the Russian Federation, primarily Moscow, buy her equipment for hundreds, and sometimes billions of rubles. However, in this publication we will return to the history and tell about how Mogilevich and Firtash "stuck" to the gas business.

This can be understood from the documents of Interpol and the interior Ministry. Back in the early 90-ies, the Hungarian police recorded that the people of Mogilevich from somewhere there were securities of "Gazprom", which they are called, scrolled. The securities were put into the Bank as a Deposit, on this basis loans were obtained. The money went into the development of a profitable criminal business, and then the shares were bought back. Where they came from representatives of Seva Kiev found out Russian operatives. At that time Mogilevich established relations with the former employee of the Ministry of internal Affairs of the Russian Federation Vyacheslav Kuznetsov who held a position of the adviser to the head of "Gazprom" REM Vyakhirev. It was he who helped the gangsters to get and scroll shares. However, this cooperation is not limited to. According to Interpol, which is available, in 1996, a meeting was held in Switzerland, which was attended by Mogilevich, Kuznetsov, shadow businessman Birstein and several others. On it were developed schemes for the supply of Russian and Turkmen natural gas to Ukraine. In Russia, the developed plan was supported by Vyakhirev and his friend Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin. In Ukraine, it was supported by Prime Minister Pavel Lazarenko. To negotiate with him was the least of the problems – the "right hand" Mogilevich, Igor Fisherman held the post of Advisor to Lazarenko. Another closest assistant to Seva of Kiev was Stanislav Nikolaev, the current head of Mercator.

The meaning of the scheme, if not to go into technical details, was as follows: gas from Russia and Turkmenistan (in Turkmenistan it was purchased, both Mogilevich's structures and Gazprom) went first to a transit company controlled by Seva Kiev and other interested parties. There he was mixed, and then sent to Ukraine. Part of the payments between the countries went through transit firms. The emergence of such intermediaries in the relations between the two countries was explained simply. If Russia and Ukraine worked directly, it would be difficult to steal budget money. And when there are firms-transiters it is much easier to make it. Especially as their activity was controlled by Mogilevich who knows all nuances of work of financial institutions in the West, knows how to launder the stolen money and where them then with benefit to invest. The main transit country became company "Rusukrenergo". 50% of its shares belonged to Gazprom, and the second half officially belonged to Ukrainian businessmen Dmitry Firtash and Ivan Fursin – people closely connected with Mogilevich. According to the data, Firtash since 2000 owned an offshore company Highrock Holdings, which was established by another wife of Seva Kiev Olga Schneider. Earlier Firtash was the official representative of Eural Trans Gas in Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. Eural Trans Gas was established in Hungary and was fully controlled by Mogilevich. It was also one of the gas transit countries and mainly worked with Turkmenistan.

            As a result, the scheme built by Gazprom, Mogilevich, Firtash and corrupt representatives of the governments of the two countries successfully worked. Gas money flowed, some of them were sawn Seva Kievsky and shared among stakeholders. The leaders of Gazprom, the state gas companies of Ukraine, the Prime Ministers of the two countries changed, and the transit firms controlled by Mogilevich and Firtash continued to work and satisfied everyone. Nothing has changed even when Mogilevich actually became an outcast around the world.

            In 2007, the authorities of Ukraine and Russia had a long overdue question: why do they actually need an intermediary in the form of Mogilevich and Firtash in gas transactions, which, moreover, can not seriously affect financial flows in the West for a long time. With the weaning of Seva's Kiev stake in Rusukrenergo, no problems arose – half of the company belonged to Gazprom, and Firtash immediately said that he was not familiar with Seva Kiev. But to take away from Mogilevich Eural Trans Gas was a difficult task. The company, which was an important "link" in the supply of gas from Central Asia, was fully controlled by Kiev and he was not going to part with this asset. When it didn't turn out to agree on-good, intelligence agencies were involved. About it will tell in next post.

To be continued

Timothy Grishin