As it became known to Kommersant, after the annulment of the conviction of the former investigator of the Main Investigative Committee of the ICR Sergei Dubinsky for taking a bribe, and the re-examination of his criminal case in court, the state prosecution demanded that the likely corrupt official be punished even more severely. The representative of the Prosecutor General’s Office requested for the defendant the same as before, eight years in a strict regime colony, while increasing the amount of the fine from 10 million to 15 million rubles. Former lawyer Aleksey Kovrizhkin, who paid a bribe to an investigator under the control of the FSB and is a witness in this case, believes that the term for the person involved should also be “a couple of years longer.”
In the Basmanny District Court of Moscow, the criminal case on taking a particularly large bribe (part 6 of article 290 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation) by the investigator of the Main Investigative Committee of the ICR Sergey Dubinsky and his colleague from the ICR department for the Kursk region Andrey Trinev entered the final stage. At the debate, a representative of the Prosecutor General’s Office asked the court to give both defendants eight years in a strict regime colony, deprive them of their special ranks of colonel and major of justice, respectively, prohibit work in the civil service for the next 15 years, and ex-colonel Dubinsky also fined 15 million rubles. Whether judge Evgenia Pirogova will approve the position of the state prosecution will become known on April 19, when she will announce her decision.
It is worth noting that this will be the second verdict in the case of a particularly large bribe in the central office of the TFR. The first was delivered by another panel of the same court in March 2021. The Prosecutor General’s Office then stated in the debate almost the same requirements. For 5 million rubles. only the fine requested for the main accused was smaller. Judge Irina Vyrysheva then agreed with the opinion of the public prosecutor as a whole, but reduced the sentence for Sergei Dubinsky from eight to six years. As noted in the verdict, the court took into account the serious illnesses of the former investigator, which appeared after his arrest and imprisonment in a pre-trial detention center.
Nevertheless, both convicts appealed against the decision, referring to the procedural violations committed, in their opinion, in the district court, and the Moscow City Court, which considered the appeal, agreed with them. The second instance returned the materials of the criminal case to the district court for re-examination in a different composition, which was done by April of this year.
Recall that the events allegedly occurred in 2018 were discussed in the courts. Investigator for especially important cases Dubinsky then dealt with a large-scale criminal case on the embezzlement of funds of the commercial bank Express-Credit JSC, and investigator Trinev, seconded from Kursk, was part of his team. According to the prosecution, the ICR officers jointly began to intimidate passing witnesses in the case of businessman Pavel Krotov and his wife Elena Oleinikova.
Employees of the ICR allegedly demanded 5 million rubles from Mr. Krotov and his wife, threatening otherwise to transfer the spouses to the rank of defendants and seize their property.
Aleksey Kovrizhkin, Mr. Krotov’s lawyer, undertook to transfer the illegal reward, but the lawyer had previously enlisted the support of the “M” department of the FSB of Russia, which is responsible for “counterintelligence support” of the law enforcement system. On November 20, 2018, another informal meeting between Alexei Kovrizhkin and Andrey Trinev was already under the control of operatives, and after the defender put a bag of money in the glove compartment of the investigator’s car, both employees of the ICR were detained.
It is interesting that all three of its participants turned out to be “victims” of the operational experiment. The alleged bribe takers ended up in a pre-trial detention center on charges of corruption, and the initiator of the special operation himself lost his job.
The defender of the accused Trinev complained about his colleague to the Moscow Bar Association, and after a two-year trial, it deprived Alexei Kovrizhkin of his lawyer status for violation of professional ethics, expressed in cooperation with FSB operatives without coordinating their actions with the client.
Former lawyer Kovrizhkin explained to Kommersant that, in his opinion, the eight-year sentence requested by the prosecutor’s office for former investigators is not enough. “After all, the sanctions under Part 6 of Art. 290 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation only start from this figure, – the ex-defender explained. – A couple of years more, in my opinion, would be just right. However, this time no one asks me.”
It should be noted that Mr. Kovrizhkin is not a participant in the trial in the Basmanny District Court, but visits it only as a witness.
Lawyer Kovrizhkin did not agree with the decision of the Chamber of Advocates to deprive him of his status and has been challenging it in the Khamovniki District Court of Moscow for two years now. However, the civil process has stalled due to the uncertainty that has arisen in the criminal process in the bribery case. According to the witness-plaintiff, if the verdict of the ex-investigators, whom he, in fact, brought to criminal responsibility, is guilty, the initiator of the operational experiment will have a real chance to restore the selected status.