MOSCOW, June 8 (Itar-Tass World Service)
New Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev began the struggle against corruptionists in the regions. On Thursday, three high-ranking officials were detained in Nalchik (the Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria). They are suspected of conspiracy seeking for the misappropriation of republican property. The experts noted that after the appointment of the new minister purges of regional elites continue.
In Nalchik the police force from Moscow detained and convoyed to the Russian capital the head of the presidential administration in Kabardino-Balkaria, the minister of management of state property and land resources and his former deputy, who is well-known in the republic as a business lady, the Kommersant daily reported. All of them are suspected of a massive fraud. The situation becomes even more scandalous over the fact that three corruptionists are relatives Kabardino-Balkaria’s President Arsen Kanokov, the newspaper noted.
Almost at the same time the operatives went to head of the Kabardino-Balkaria presidential administration Vladimir Zhamborov, his brother – the former deputy minister of management of state property and land resources Ruslan Zhamborov, who recently headed the department of the Federal Post Service in Kabardino-Balkaria and head of the same ministry Khabdulsalam Ligidov and a well-known businesswoman in the republic and a fashion designer Madina Khatsukova.
The main economic security department noted that the detectives found Madina Khatsukova, who abused relative ties in the leadership of Kabardino-Balkaria (she is the sister of the wife of the republican president – Kommersant), “attempted at a gratis acquisition” of the building of the philharmonics in state property at more than 500 square meters, which is situated in the Nalchik historical centre. Independent experts estimated its market cost at 20 million roubles.
According to some high-ranking sources in Kabardino-Balkaria, which the Kommersant daily cited, the investigation actions can exert a major influence on the alignment of forces in the republic in the future, if not now. The term of President Arsen Kanokov reappointed in 2010 will expire in three years, and Vladimir Zhaborov, 58, who is a maternal relative of Kanokov, was considered as a probable successor.
The philharmonics building can be only a little part of the fraud, which Moscow law enforcers are investigating, the Izvestia daily reported. According to some reports, the detectives are interested in the allocation of some lands of the national park of the Elbrus foothills to individuals. The lands of 20 hectares, which turned out in possession of local businesspeople, are considered.
“I definitely link this criminal case with the appointment of new minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev. He is well-known as a successful fighter with high-ranked corruptionists in regional authorities and local elites. I believe that the associates of Arsen Kanokov is only the first such purge and investigations will be conducted in other authorities soon,” a source in the Interior Ministry gave comments to the RBC daily.