First after Gutseriev

From interest in Mikail Shishkhanov and his affairs in Binbank, will the security forces smoothly move to the head of an influential family, the scandalous oligarch Mikhail Gutseriev?

First after Gutseriev

Former co-owner of the long-suffering “Binbank”, nephew and part-time one of the closest associates and partners of the oligarch Mikhail Gutseriev, Mikail Shishkhanov, became a defendant in a criminal case on the embezzlement of about 107 billion rubles during the reorganization of Rost Bank.

So far, Shishkhanov is in the status of a witness, but law enforcement sources do not exclude that his status may change for the worse for Mr. Shishkhanov. At the same time, the businessman himself, according to some sources, has been outside Russia for a long time and may not be very afraid of possible questions from the Russian investigation.

What can Shishkhanov be charged with, why his uncle Mikhail Gutseriev, who was directly involved in the activities of Binbank and Growth Bank, turned out to be beyond suspicion and what the background of this case is in the material of The Moscow Post correspondent.

Shishkhanov’s status became known at the end of last week. At the same time, the case itself on the grounds of embezzlement (part 4. 160 of the Criminal Code) was initiated back in April 2022.

There are other defendants in the case – former top managers of Binbank and Rost Bank Kirill Lyubentsov and Alexander Lukin. Recall that “Rost Bank” was sanitized by “Binbank” before the sanitation of “Binbank” itself, which the state had to deal with directly.

Recall that “Binbank” was founded in late 1993 by Mikhail Gutseriev. In December 2014, the bank took part in the reorganization of the Rost Bank group (Rost Bank, SKA-bank, Tveruniversalbank, Akkobank, Kedr), for which the state provided 35.9 billion rubles.

First after Gutseriev

Mikail Shishkhanov. Photo:

In September 2017, the Central Bank announced the reorganization of Binbank and Rost Bank through the Banking Sector Consolidation Fund. In 2018, Rost Bank joined Trust, a year later Binbank was merged with Otkritie.

Gutseriev and debts

So, the reorganization began in 2017 against the background of a large-scale outflow of capital from a credit institution. The procedure involved the use of funds from the Banking Sector Consolidation Fund – the Central Bank was to receive 75% of the bank being rehabilitated. At the same time, at that time, the head of the board of directors of Binbank, Mikail Shishkhanov, stated that the management of the structure itself applied to the Central Bank with a request for reorganization.

Recall that the financial hole in Binbank at the time of the actual collapse was about 300 billion rubles – perhaps a record among all such cases in recent years. Writes about it “”.

The former chairman of the board of Rost Bank JSC, and later the top manager of Binbank, Kirill Lyubentsov, was unemployed at the time of his arrest. His ex-colleague Alexander Lukin, who at one time headed Binbank, was taken as the general director of Kanashsky Breeding Poultry Plant LLC, a large enterprise in Chuvashia that supplies poultry meat and eggs.

Both Lyubentsov and Lukin, by court order, are in jail until October 2. They categorically do not admit guilt and are ready to cooperate with the investigation in order to prove their own innocence. Writes about this “Kommersant”.

In this regard, there is a version on the market, according to which Mikayil Shishkhanov may be the target of the investigators. And these citizens Lukin and Lyubentsov allegedly act either as recorded scapegoats or as valuable witnesses who, under pressure, could give some evidence directly against Mikail Shishkhanov.

According to the investigation, cited by Kommersant, Lukin and Lyubentsov, acting as part of an organized group with unidentified persons, developed “a scheme for the systematic theft of the bank’s assets entrusted to them.”

In accordance with it, at the end of September 2015, the financiers allegedly organized the conclusion by Rost Bank with the Cypriot company Stratola Investments Ltd controlled by them of a loan agreement for $40 million (or 2.6 billion rubles at the Central Bank rate), and two years later the sale to this offshore from the bank’s balance of bonds of OOO FinStandard, Vail Finance and Finstone worth more than 8.1 billion rubles. At the same time, the financiers, according to the investigation, obviously did not intend to fulfill their obligations to Rost Bank.

In the situation, the question is extremely confusing – what kind of unidentified persons are these, and how could this happen, bypassing at that time the beneficiaries of a financial organization, among whom was Mikail Shishkhanov?

At the same time, it is extremely difficult to consider the latter separately from his influential uncle, the owner of the Safmar group, Mikhail Gutseriev. It is the latter that they are trying to present as the main character – the head of the Gutseriev empire, which includes Shishkhanov’s business.

It is known that in recent years Mikhail Gutseriev and his inner circle have been experiencing serious problems in business. In particular, Safmar previously had huge debts – at some point they allegedly reached about $15 billion (at the old rate until 2022).

Mikhail Gutseriev himself owed 325 billion rubles under a series of loans to only one of the banks. Another 10 billion rubles are debts to small credit institutions. Another about 77 billion rubles was waiting for VTB back. How and due to what Gutseriev will return this money, no one knows. Most likely, he himself.

However, the oligarch does not give up hope of reaching an agreement, and as if he is upholstering high bureaucratic offices. In particular, he still managed to agree on the restructuring of part of the debt to one of the banks. However, Gutseriev should still be far away from the full repayment of all financial claims. Yes, and for what?

Even at the time of the reorganization of Binbank, they tried to present the problems of the structure as a result of Gutseriev’s possible actions – he was credited with a desire to withdraw the assets of a financial institution in order to improve the situation in his own business. So far, no one has been able to provide evidence of this version. But the interest of the security forces in Shishkhanov suggests that this issue has not yet been put to rest.

Shishkhanov has no “trust”

In this context, another circumstance is interesting. The very case of embezzlement was initiated at the request of the bank of non-core assets “Trust”, which had to deal with the consequences of possible financial fraud in “Binbank”.

Why did neither the investigators nor the “Trust” have any claims against Mr. Gutseriev, whom they are trying to present as the main beneficiary and the person who was supposed to make fundamental decisions on the life of “Binbank”?

Perhaps the status of Shishkhanov and the whole criminal case in general is just a cover so that there will be no questions to Gutseriev himself in the future.

According to the authors of the Arbitr Telegram channel, the alleged secret is that Trust previously concluded with top managers of Binbank and Growth Bank, according to which it has no claims against them. As if Alexander Lukin and Kirill Lyubentsov did not fall into the contour of this agreement. It is strange why Mikail Shishkhanov did not get into this circuit.

At the same time, these Lukin and Lyubentsov are defendants in three more claims by the Central Bank and Trust (cases No. A40-173349/20 for 306.5 billion rubles, No. A40-175485/20 for 283.8 billion rubles, No. A40 -173398/2020 for 22.7 billion rubles).

Taking into account another claim from the Central Bank in the amount of 85.4 billion rubles. in aggregate, claims were made for a record 698 billion rubles – that is, more than twice as much as the hole in Binbank’s finances, originally estimated at 300 billion rubles, at the time the reorganization began. writes about this.

In addition, the Trust bank filed a claim directly against Shishkhanov for 11 billion rubles. in the Kuntsevsky District Court and several applications for bringing to subsidiary liability in the framework of the bankruptcy of Digital Invest and Region Invest. As part of the bankruptcies “Growth Investment” and “Growth Capital”, applications for bringing to subsidiary liability were returned. Were you able to reach an agreement?

Earlier it became known about a whole series of claims against Mr. Shishkhanov from the “Trust”. In particular, about a lawsuit for 22.7 billion rubles, where Mikhail Gutseriev’s nephew was on the list of defendants. Moreover, the claims were also related to the activities of Rost Bank. Forbes wrote about it.

Another lawsuit of “Trust” – for 8.5 billion rubles, was filed by the Trust against Shishkhanov’s company Didita Invest LLC. The situation is also connected with the rehabilitation of Rost Bank. It is not known how these claims relate to the claim for 22.7 billion rubles, and whether they are part of it.

It is very hard to believe that Shishkhanov and his uncle did everything possible to keep the bank afloat. Back in March 2019, in the course of legal proceedings, a representative of Trust Bank stated that shortly before the reorganization of Binbank, over 205 billion rubles.

First after Gutseriev

Mikhail Gutseriev. A photo: rbc.en

With the money received from Rost Bank, this company bought securities of offshore Cypriot companies, the ultimate beneficiaries of which were Mikail Shishkhanov and other close relatives of the owner of Safmar – Said and Sait-Salam Gutseriev.

There is reason to believe that these funds, like many other assets of Gutseriev-Shishkhanov, may long be outside the country. However, a criminal case on embezzlement is already underway. So, with a high degree of probability, there will also be “switchmen” in it, for the role of which Lyubentsov and Lukin are perfect, and it will pass through Shishkhanov on a tangent. But what about Gutseriev? And Gutseriev in general, as they say, “is not in business.”

Andrew Fink

Andrew Fink

Andrew Fink was born in 1977 in Bellows Falls, Vermont. His career as a journalist began with the regional publication Bellows Falls Times. political commentator, one of the founders of the project "Russian crimes".

Related Posts

Next Post