‘I’m not guilty’: Baring Vostok’s Calvey denies embezzlement charges as trial begins

3 weeks ago
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MOSCOW, February 2. /TASS/. Michael Calvey, founder of the Baring Vostok private equity firm has denied charges of embezzlement at the opening of his court proceedings, a TASS correspondent reported from a courtroom.

On Tuesday, Moscow’s Meschansky Court began to consider the merits of the Baring Vostok founder’s case.

“I plead not guilty,” Calvey said responding to a question from the judge.

He declared that he had not committed any wrongful acts and had not formed a criminal group.

“During the course of the investigation, law enforcement agencies deliberately ignored all the evidence supporting the legality of all the transactions that were conducted, and would have invalidated this accusation. I expect that this court will examine the evidence and evaluate it,” Calvey stated.

The prosecutors opened the meeting by announcing the indictment. According to the prosecution, Calvey hatched and carried out the embezzlement scheme in question.

“The defendants drew up and implemented a plan of embezzling funds for their own gain. The group formed by Calvey was distinguished by stability, careful planning, sound coordination and a common understanding of the goals,” the state prosecutor declared.

Baring Vostok’s case

On February 13, 2019, Russia’s Investigative Committee launched a criminal case into the embezzlement of 2.5 bln rubles ($ 32.9 mln) from the Vostochny Bank following a complaint by Serzod Yusupov, a minority shareholder in Vostochny Bank, filed with Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB). Michael Calvey is the key defendant in the case.

According to the investigation, Calvey put together a scheme to embezzle 2.5 bln rubles in the course of lending funds to the First Collection Bureau company in 2015.

On February 15, 2019, law enforcement agencies arrested Calvey and five others: Vagan Abgaryan, a partner at Baring Vostok, Philippe Delpal, an investment partner for the financial industry sector at Baring Vostok; Ivan Zyuzin, investment director at Baring Vostok, along with General Director of the First Collection Bureau Maxim Vladimirov and Alexey Kordichev, an advisor to the Management Board of Norvik Bank. They are all facing charges under part 4 article 159 of Russia’s Criminal Code (fraud committed on a large scale by an organized group).

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