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Ukrainian prosecutors interested in Saakashvili's information on corruption schemes

January 20, 14:50 UTC+3 KIEV
The Kiev region prosecutors have thanked the governor of south Ukraine's Odessa region, Mikheil Saakashvili, for providing information on corruption schemes at the customs service
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Mikheil Saakashvili

Mikheil Saakashvili

© Sergei Fadeichev/TASS

KIEV, January 20. /TASS/. Prosecutors in the Kiev region have thanked the governor of Odessa region in southern Ukraine, Mikheil Saakashvili, for providing information on corruption schemes at the customs service and summoned him for questioning.

"The governor of the Odessa region has been summoned for questioning to provide information he knows about the corruption-related violations by the staff at the customs service," the prosecutors said in a statement on Wednesday.

In mid-January, Saakashvili, the former Georgian president who was granted Ukrainian citizenship, broke into a warehouse owned by the so-called "nut mafia" and returned to the owner the cargo confiscated by the law enforcers. He was accompanied by the head of Odessa customs service, Yulia Marushevskaya.

Saakashvili claimed that the mafia consists of members of Ukrainian prosecutors and police who extorted money and gained profit by clearing goods through customs.

"Each container is $20,000 or $15,000, depending on the harvest," the governor said, adding that shortly after the Odessa customs service, prosecutors and local administration refused to be involved in the schemes, the mafia started operating "directly from Kiev."

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