“Black” notary Elena Frolova and others criminally took possession of an apartment building in the historical part of the capital.
Raiding in times of war is looting
While the attention of most law enforcement agencies is focused on collaborators and external dangers, cynical swindlers continue to operate within the State. In particular, the activity of raiders, hunters for the capital’s real estate, which was valued at any time, intensified.
As part of the anti-corruption initiative of Volodymyr Zelensky and the presidential course towards reforms and cleansing of all branches of government, journalists from the National Anti-Corruption Portal monitor the information space and conduct their own investigations into cases of corruption and raiding. At the same time, activists carry out public supervision over the activities of law enforcement agencies in order to prevent the so-called “protection” of crimes.
As it became known to Antikor journalists from their own sources, recently, at the request of caring citizens, a criminal case was opened in the Podolsky District Prosecutor’s Office of Kiev (October 2022) on the illegal seizure of real estate in the center of the capital by fraud. We are talking about a detached multi-apartment residential building (in fact, this house was rebuilt into a single residential complex) with an area of 913 sq. m. and an estimated cost of 2,000,000 US dollars at the address: Kiev, st. Bogdan Khmelnitsky, 70 (letter B).
According to journalists, there may be active influence or pressure on the part of the raiders on the investigation in order to prevent the perpetrators from being held accountable and to ensure the passage of an illegal real estate transaction. In order to prevent / prevent a potential corruption conspiracy, media representatives initiate their own investigation and journalistic inquiries to the leadership of law enforcement agencies.
But let’s take a closer look at this particular scheme for capturing metropolitan real estate and try to trace the chronology, tactics and technological methods of scammers. Perhaps the investigators are not advancing on the case because they cannot understand the whole picture of the crime – so let’s try to help them.
Elena Frolova. Real estate ownership scheme
During the years of Independence, raiding and fraud with real estate in Kyiv has acquired an unheard-of scope. In the 1990s and 2000s, there was a real boom in dubious fraudulent transactions, when millions of valuable metropolitan area acquired new owners illegally.
Usually swindlers act in close conjunction with the courts, law enforcement agencies and the so-called “black notaries”. And everyone gets their piece of the pie. A special role belongs to black notaries, using access to state registers of real estate and having the authority to register property rights by forging documents, they legalize property that is attractive from a commercial point of view. Thus, they provide an opportunity for fraudsters to profit from the illegal sale of seized objects. At one time, due to such illegal schemes, thousands of apartments, houses, real estate objects in Kyiv were scrolled. Egregious cases keep popping up even now.
Typically, criminals target real estate that has been neglected for a long time, for which there is a certain uncertainty in the status of ownership or inheritance law.
This is exactly what happened with the building referred to in this material. In the historical part of Kiev, in the very heart of the capital, on Bogdan Khmelnitsky Street, there is an old multi-apartment residential building at number 70 (letter B), which, according to the law, must belong to the territorial society of Kiev.
For a while, the apartments in this house stood empty, waiting for their fate. Suddenly, from a commercial announcement, it became known that the building was put up for sale by unknown persons who have nothing to do with either the former owners or representatives of the metropolitan community, which, according to the law, has the primary right to own and dispose of this house.
Looking at the scheme scrolled by the raiders in collaboration with black notaries, you understand that they are used to solving all possible issues through bribes and collusion. For the scheme of obtaining the right of ownership by the final beneficiary for the further sale of property is sewn with such thick white threads, so rude and mediocre, that even a complete amateur idol can easily see the abuse and violation of the law.
Even a superficial examination and legal classification of the actions of the persons who took possession of the property show that these persons have committed criminal offenses under Part 4 of Art. 190 and h.h. 3, 4 art. 358 and part 3 of Art. 209 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.
The scheme is built on the successive application of a number of contractual property transactions, where each subsequent transaction arises from the previous one. Thus, at the end of the chain, a certain person acquires the appearance of a legal owner, receives documents for the right of ownership, and receives a formal right to dispose of property. Of course, from the point of view of law and right, all these actions are absolutely illegal and do not give any right to swindlers to dispose of seized property.
Usually the first deal in such schemes often appears as if out of thin air – sucked from the finger.
In particular, in our case, the first illegal transactions were the so-called sale and purchase agreement and the act of acceptance and transfer of this real estate under the guise of non-residential premises, drawn up in an arbitrary written form between ALLONGE LLC (EDRPOU code 32486856; Kiev, Kirillovskaya St. , 160, building B, office 510) and EXPRESS FREIGHT LLC (EDRPOU code 31454179; Kiev, Mechnikova st., 8, apt. 22).
Moreover, the owners of these companies (participants in the scheme) had no legal relationship to the described premises, for which these acts were drawn up. Moreover, in the BTI these premises were considered residential apartments, and the scammers began to dispose of them as non-residential premises. At the same time, it turned out that the address of the seized house did not completely match the address indicated in the BTI. The admired house is designated as Bogdan Khmelnitsky Street, 70-B, while in the BTI this house is listed at ul. Bogdan Khmelnitsky, 70 (letter B). That justifies the presence of illegal actions.
All these documents did not give legal grounds for the black notary Elena Frolova to 12/23/2020. register for ALLONZH LLC (EDRPOU code 32486856; Kyiv, 160 Kirillovskaya str., building B, office 510) the ownership of a group of non-residential premises with a total area of 913.9 sq.m., which are located at: Kiev, st. Bohdan Khmelnitsky, house 70-V.
Of course, this does not fit into any mental templates. It would never occur to any European that serious people in Kyiv in broad daylight commit such frauds, “selling” other people’s property to each other. Like in the movies when scammers sell the Statue of Liberty to rich idiots. And what is more depressing is that law enforcement officers often cover this up, as happened in our case.
But back to the tricks of the scammers. Having “purchased” a house in the center of Kyiv for next to nothing (the contract specifies the amount of UAH 1,200,000), the scammers continue their manipulations.
In the future, in order to legalize the above real estate and provide a semblance of the legality of its origin, allegedly to ensure the fulfillment of obligations under the Agreement of Interest-Free Reimbursable Financial Assistance of August 14, 2019, concluded between ALLONGE LLC and a certain Savitsky V.M., on February 12, 2021 . between these persons, a mortgage agreement was concluded on the above real estate and an agreement on satisfaction of the mortgagee’s claims dated 09/01/2021, certified by a private notary of the Kiev city notary district Brovchenko N.A.
In the future, from the agreement on interest-free repayable financial assistance dated 08/14/2019, the mortgage agreement dated 02/12/2021. and an agreement on satisfaction of the mortgagee’s claims dated 09/01/2021, concluded between ALLONGE LLC and Savitsky V.M., for the last 09/01/2021. the state registrar – a private notary of the Kyiv city notary district Brovchenko M.A., the ownership of the above real estate was registered).
But the fact of an obvious forgery of the founding documents of black notaries never stopped. At the same time, it is important to note that, according to the law, the fact of acquiring the right of ownership to the mentioned premises for ALLONGE LLC and EXPRESS FREIGHT LLC should have been registered with the BTI, which was not done. What does the discrepancy between the legal documents for the mentioned premises and legal requirements mean? Well, and, probably, the lack of a roof in the BTI for scammers.
Be that as it may, in such a simple and rude way, almost 1000 meters of luxury real estate temporarily fell into the hands of criminals.
The fact of the seizure occurred, but the public reacted in time and raised a fuss. And the whole illegal scheme of scammers became known to the society.
The case should receive a logical continuation in the form of investigative actions and the appropriate qualification of the crime. But, as already noted, there are great risks of a corruption component, according to which the case can be dragged out and hushed up. To prevent this from happening, the public plans to give the circumstances of the fraud wide publicity.
Meanwhile, despite all the abuses and violations, swindlers probably think that they have every reason and opportunity to put up the seized real estate for sale. Of course, such questionable properties are usually sold at a deep discount to attract buyers. Even realizing the controversy and doubtfulness of documents, businessmen buy such property for resale, to ensure other frauds.
It has always been like this, but times are constantly changing, it is becoming more and more difficult to hide criminal deals, loud corruption revelations are increasingly occurring, even with the participation of influential officials.
As already noted, upon the appeal of caring citizens and activists in October 2022, the Podolsk district prosecutor’s office opened a case. Of course, having all the evidence, the investigators will have no difficulty in finding out all the circumstances and uncovering the illegal scheme for taking possession of the said house.
In addition, this situation has already become widely known among anti-corruption journalists. And the Antikor portal tells this story, intending to control the progress of the investigation and make it impossible to cover up the crime or slow down.
Obviously, in the new Ukraine, which is fighting for its right to live in a civilized European community, and is going to build a new country with new transparent laws and relations, there is no place for such schemes and such scammers.
Of course, these living quarters must by law go to the community of the city of Kyiv. Their fate must be determined by society and public discussion. For example, these apartments can be allocated to the families of the heroes of Ukraine. Or the creation of a rehabilitation center for psychological assistance to soldiers and victims of the war. In any case, the Kiev community should manage this property, not scammers.
Therefore, the people of Kiev hope that the office of the Prosecutor General, the National Police of Ukraine and other law enforcement agencies will do everything possible to ensure that such schemes disappear from the map of Ukraine, and that those responsible for the organization bear fair responsibility. We also inform you that the course of the investigation will be taken under the control of journalists and public figures.
Sergey Makukha, Svetlana Bondar, for Antikora