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Vladivostok Mayor Charged With Corruption, Abuse Of Office

Vladivostok Mayor Igor Pushkaryov

Vladivostok Mayor Igor Pushkaryov

The Russian Investigative Committee said it has charged Vladivostok Mayor Igor Pushkaryov with abuse of office and corrupt business practices.

The mayor's alleged accomplice, Andrei Lushnikov, director of the enterprise Dorogi Vladivostoka, was also charged with corrupt business practices.

Pushkaryov pleaded not guilty before a Moscow court on June 2, which ordered he be detained through July 31. Lushnikov pleaded guilty and agreed to testify against Pushkaryov.

Pushkaryov is suspected of arranging a criminal scheme in which the road-building enterprise Roads of Vladivostok purchased building materials from the Vostoktsement group of companies, controlled by the mayor's relatives, between 2009 and 2014.

The building materials allegedly were acquired at grossly overcharged prices. As a result, Pushkaryov embezzled 45 million rubles ($670,000), while the Roads of Vladivostok suffered damages of 158 million rubles ($2.3 million) and liabilities exceeding 800 million rubles ($12 million).

Pushkaryov also is charged with paying a 1.4 million ruble bribe to Lushnikov in exchange for Lushnikov acting against the interests of the enterprise and in the interests of Pushkaryov and the Vostoktsement group by ensuring their selection as providers of building materials under municipal contracts for road repairs in Vladivostok.

Based on reporting by TASS and Interfax