MOSCOW, April 19. /TASS/. The case of the founder of the Baring Vostok foundation, Michael Calvey, accused of embezzling 2.5 bln rubles, was discussed at a meeting between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and members of the International Council on Cooperation and Investment on Friday, a source told reporters.
"Of course, they did," he said.
On February 13, Russia’s Investigative Committee launched a criminal case into the embezzlement of 2.5 bln rubles ($37.5 mln) from Vostochny Bank. Michael Calvey is the key defendant in the case.
According to the investigation, Calvey and his accomplices put together a scheme, where the "First Collection Bureau", under their control, waived its right to a 59.9% stake in a Luxembourg-based company called the International Financial Technology Group (IFTG), to the Vostochny bank to pay it back for a 2.5 bln-ruble debt. Before the deal, IFTG’s shares were valued at 3 bln rubles. However, the investigation is examining another estimate of 600,000 rubles (according to a Cyprus-based company’s valuation). That said, the Central Bank claimed that the price of these shares was close to zero, the investigator noted. Calvey rejected all charges and accused the minority shareholder of the Vostochny Bank of conjuring up bogus charges caused by a "corporate conflict" in the bank.
Baring Vostok is one of the largest private equity firms focusing on Russia and the CIS with $3.7 bln in capital. Since 1994, the fund has poured more than $2.4 bln of investments into 70 projects in the areas of financial services, oil and gas, telecommunications and media, and into the consumer sector. Baring Vostok’s projects include CTC Media, Yandex, Avito, Ozon, ER-Telecom, 1C, and Novomet.