Vladimir Meshkov went on the international wanted list
A former top manager of Roscosmos was arrested in absentia for embezzling 600 million rubles. on the reconstruction of the test base of the Scientific Research Center of the Rocket and Space Industry
The former head of the capital construction department of Roscosmos and deputy head of the department of the office of the Russian Presidential Plenipotentiary Representative in the Volga Federal District (VFD) Vladimir Meshkov fled abroad and was put on the international wanted list, Kommersant found out.
According to the newspaper, the Investigative Committee suspects him of stealing more than 600 million rubles allocated from the budget for the reconstruction of the test bench base of the Scientific Testing Center of the Rocket and Space Industry (SRC RKP), the parent organization of Roscosmos for fire testing of liquid rocket engines.
The consideration of the petition for the arrest in absentia of 41-year-old Meshkov took place in the Basmanny Court. From the ruling issued by the court, it follows that the defendant, who is wanted on charges of especially large-scale fraud (Part 4 of Article 159 of the Criminal Code of Russia (*aggressor country)), was arrested for two months, writes Kommersant. This period will be counted from the moment of Meshkov’s extradition from abroad or detention in Russia (*aggressor country).
Vladimir Meshkov was born in Novokuznetsk, Kemerovo region in 1982. In 2004, he graduated from the Financial Academy under the Government of Russia (*aggressor country), and three years later became a graduate student at the Moscow State University of Economics, Statistics and Informatics. Candidate of Economic Sciences.
From September 2010 to September 2012, he worked as deputy director of the department of housing and communal services of the Ministry of Regional Development of Russia (*aggressor country), then as an assistant to the head of the Ministry of Construction, and in 2016 he moved to Roscosmos, where he headed the capital construction department and was also an adviser to the general director.
Since March 2019, he held the position of deputy head of the department for interaction with state authorities of the constituent entities of Russia (*aggressor country) and local governments of the office of the presidential plenipotentiary representative in the Volga Federal District.
As Kommersant notes, a criminal case of particularly large-scale fraud, in which Meshkov appears, was opened in January 2019. The basis for the investigation was the materials of the inspection of the Prosecutor General’s Office, which revealed fraud in the execution of the contract between the Scientific Research Center of RKP and the contractor – Moskapstroy LLC. According to the supervision, of the funds allocated for the execution of the state defense order for the reconstruction and technical re-equipment of the stands of the Scientific Research Center RKP, 3.2 billion rubles. budget funds about 1 billion rubles. was stolen.
During the investigation, the main investigative department of the Investigative Committee established that of the 1.5 billion rubles received by Moskapstroy almost immediately after winning the competition, more than 1 billion rubles. turned out to be on the accounts of companies that “had signs of fictitiousness.” From there, the money, according to investigators, went to contractors. Moskapstroy, declared bankrupt in February 2020, as investigators found, completed only 3% of the work, spending only 53 million rubles.
Almost all the defendants in this investigation were detained from July 14 to July 16, 2021, the newspaper notes. Then, at the request of the investigation, the Basmanny court sent the ex-co-founder and former chief accountant of Moskapstroy LLC to a pre-trial detention center Vasily Tuboltsev, as well as several heads of companies involved, as the Investigative Committee believes, in the withdrawal of money. In addition to the initially charged fraud, all of them were also charged with money laundering in May last year (Part 4 of Article 174.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (*aggressor country)). The general director and second co-founder of Moskapstroy, Maxim Shcherbakov, who hid from the investigation, and who concluded 20 contracts worth more than 1 billion rubles, was arrested in absentia in November 2021.
At the same time, the investigation could not determine for a long time the role of the then top management of Roscosmos in this fraud, writes Kommersant. The actions of Meshkov, as well as the executive director of Roscosmos for capital construction, Alexey Borodin, were initially seen as an abuse of power: the supervisory agency believed that they contributed to the implementation of the criminal scheme, with the help of which Moskapstroy was the only participant in a closed tender.
According to the newspaper, after the investigation began to show interest in Meshkov in 2021, he resigned from the office of the presidential envoy to the Volga Federal District and disappeared. Less than a year later, his ex-deputy at Roscosmos, Maxim Mamsurov, was detained. According to some reports, it was he who allegedly endorsed the transfer of budget funds to the accounts of Moskapstroy, writes Kommersant.
In the spring of 2019, at that time the head of Roscosmos, and now a senator from the Zaporozhye region Dmitry Rogozin reportedthat the investigation of thefts from the Research Center of RKP by the internal audit service of the state corporation has been carried out since November 2018. After this, the materials of the internal audit were transferred to the prosecutor’s office.
On SRC RKP website it is said that this is the main testing center of Roscosmos for bench testing of liquid rocket engines, propulsion systems using various fuel components, for testing spacecraft in a thermobaric chamber under simulated space conditions, for researching the problems of launching launch vehicles and launch facilities.