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Ukraine: Lawmakers Named In Money-Laundering Investigation

Kyiv, 11 January 2002 (RFE/RL) -- Ukrainian media reported today that the Prosecutor-General's Office has opened an investigation into alleged money laundering by several lawmakers. The Novyi television channel reported that the investigation names six deputies, including presidential ally Oleksandr Volkov and Ihor Bakai, the former chief of the state oil and gas company Naftogaz.

The investigation is to examine the politicians' Swiss bank accounts and is expected to clarify whether the politicians declared their foreign revenue before their election into parliament.

The Prosecutor-General's Office move is the second high-profile announcement in a week. On 4 January, media reported that prosecutors had launched an inquiry into illegal arms trading by current and former senior officials.

That inquiry names Security and Defense Council Chief Yevhen Marchuk, former security chief Leonid Derkach, and his son Andriy, a lawmaker. Marchuk has previously denied involvement in arms trading. He says such allegations are designed to discredit the security service.

The investigation was launched following an inquiry lodged by two legislators, AP reported. ITAR-TASS reported that investigators have asked their foreign colleagues for information in the Marchuk-Derkach investigation.