The former mayor of Voskresensk, Artur Bolotnikov, who is accused of embezzlement and bribery, has had his arrest extended. Look at the sky in a box for him for another three months, or even longer – if the investigation drags on. The correspondent of The Moscow Post managed to find out some details of the case of the protege of the governor of the Moscow Region, Andrei Vorobyov, presented as a strong business executive. In their letter to the editors of The Moscow Post, readers are indignant at how this could have happened.
Artur Bolotnikov is one of those who are commonly called professional officials. He was noted at various posts in the Noginsk, Pavlovo-Posad and Voskresensky districts of the Moscow region. It can be called with full confidence the man of Governor Vorobyov. For example, representing Bolotnikov in 2019, acting. Vorobyov, head of the administration of the Voskresensky district, sang praises to him, calling him a strong business executive who had worked in the housing and communal services sector for many years. And, if you look at Bolotnikov’s personal page on social networks, then he is a member of the “Team of the Governor of the Moscow Region” group. That is, the demand from Vorobyov for this “strong business executive” is not in vain. Especially now, when Vorobyov is eager for another term.
Recall that earlier – in January 2022, Alexander Savkin, deputy head of the administration of the city of Voskresensk near Moscow, was also detained on suspicion of taking a bribe from a local entrepreneur.
Savkin was appointed by Bolotnikov. Birds of a feather flock together?
Criminal case of Bolotnikov: traces go to housing and communal services
Bolotnikov himself resigned from the post of head of Voskresensk in January 2023, having sat in the chair since 2019, before that he managed to steer the administration of the Voskresensky district in the status of acting.
And already in April 2023, it became known that the former mayor from Vorobyov’s team was detained in the case of a large bribe and embezzlement. The Tverskoy Court of Moscow sent the former official under arrest until June 2, but the defense tried to appeal this decision. Some details of this story became known from the materials of the court. Firstly, Bolotnikov is charged with Part 4 of Art. 160 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, that is, embezzlement or embezzlement committed by an organized group or on an especially large scale, and Part 4 of Art. 290 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation – taking a bribe by a person who held the position of head of a local self-government body.
Secondly, according to data from court documents, apparently, the case refers to events that occurred during the period when Bolotnikov was the head of Voskresensk, since the defense, as an argument for canceling the arrest, stated that “Bolotnikov A.V. . from 01/10/2023 is not …, his powers have been terminated, he cannot interfere with the investigation and put pressure on witnesses.” Thirdly, apparently, in addition to Bolotnikov, there are two more defendants in the case, but their data has been purged from the court materials.
The court rejected the arguments of the defense and noted that “Bolotnikov A.V. is a pensioner of the internal affairs bodies and for a long time served as head of the local government, as a result of which he is aware of the specifics of the production of procedural actions and has extensive connections in state authorities.”
How can one not recall here that back in 2005, a certain “Bolotnikov A.V. was accused of being the head of the operational-investigative unit of the Department for Combating Tax Crimes of the Main Internal Affairs Directorate, being an official, acting out of selfish interest on February 3, 2004 and contrary to the interests of the service, abusing his official powers in his office received a bribe” – for committing illegal actions related to the termination of the audit of the financial activities of two companies and the return of previously seized documentation.
Then this full namesake of the future mayor was acquitted, but it’s like with spoons – they were found, but the sediment remained. So in April 2023, the person involved was left under arrest, and in early June it was also extended.
Studying the available materials of the “Bolotnikov case”, we came to the conclusion that it may be connected with the case of Viktor Serikov and Denis Tereshkin, ex-heads of municipal utilities in Voskresensk. In the summer of 2022, both appeared in reports on the initiation of a criminal case on fraud and embezzlement of funds from Municipal Unitary Enterprise House Management – Voskresensk and Municipal Unitary Enterprise Beloozerskaya Housing and Public Utilities. The fact is that the founder of both municipal unitary enterprises is precisely the administration of the Voskresensk urban district, which means that it is Bolotnikov, as the head of the mayor’s office, who should (and could) control the work.
It is worth recalling here that a year before these events, Beloozerskaya Housing and Public Utilities Municipal Unitary Enterprise, which in 2020 received the status of a single heat supply organization in the Voskresensk city district, appeared in a litigation to recover payments from citizens for heat supply at inflated tariffs. MUP lost the dispute. Moreover, in 2020, residents publicly complained about inflated prices for housing and communal services and blamed Bolotnikov for ignoring the population.
In addition, in 2022, residents of the central part of Voskresensk spent almost a week without cold water due to numerous breaks in the water main. And again, the same MUP was responsible, whose director at that time could boast of a salary of about 250 thousand rubles.
In February 2023, the same municipal unitary enterprise also received complaints from residents of one of the Voskresensk apartment buildings regarding improper maintenance of the house, which repeatedly led to carbon monoxide poisoning of residents. As noted in the report of the Sledkom, the appeal cited an example when, due to clogging of smoke and ventilation ducts, a family with three young children was poisoned, as well as a young man, who as a result was hospitalized in intensive care.
Also, a 92-year-old veteran of the Great Patriotic War, who lived in this house, was forced to leave her home out of fear for her health.
On the fact of providing services that do not meet safety requirements, then a criminal case was initiated. Alexander Bastrykin instructed the head of the Main Investigative Directorate of the Investigative Committee of Russia for the Moscow Region, Alexander Starikov, to report on the investigative actions carried out and the circumstances established at the moment, and, based on the results of the investigation, on its results. Apparently, this episode is still under investigation.
But the matter was not limited to these statements.
Judging by the financial data (loss in 2022 – 224 million rubles) and a bunch of cases in arbitration, the leaders of the municipal unitary enterprise Beloozerskaya Housing and Public Utilities also managed to bring it to the handle. For example, today the claim of Sovcombank for the recovery of more than 48 million rubles is in arbitration. At the same time, a bankruptcy case against MUP is also under consideration, which will begin to be considered on June 21. And the risk of bankruptcy is quite high.
As reported by Voskresenskiye Delovye Vesti, Andrey Shorikov, the new director of MUP Beloozerskoye ZhKKH, who replaced Serikov, at one of the meetings of the commission on housing and communal services in the City Council of Voskresensk stated directly that the company’s accounts payable were 850 million rubles, and in the light of this money, no to what not.
Thus, having collected money from the population at inflated tariffs, MUP will safely go bankrupt.
Where’s the money, Zin? Those surpluses are the difference between the real and the imagined tariff.
Back in October 2022, local deputy Aleksey Morgunov directly criticized the administration of Voskresensk in an open area, as a result of which the only supplier of cold water supply and sanitation was created – MUP “Beloozerskoye Housing and Public Utilities”. The deputy said that this led to an increase in the tariff for relevant services for residents, the lack of overhaul of networks, serious tax debts and litigation.
With Municipal Unitary Enterprise House Management-Voskresensk, the situation is no better: in 2022, the loss is 39 million rubles, and the bankruptcy case has been heard since November 2022, and the number of creditors there is growing exponentially. Since April 2023, the CBM is under supervision as the first stage of the insolvency procedure.
Judging by the data of Rusprofile, Serikov was noted in the heads of both municipal unitary enterprises: at the municipal unitary enterprise Beloozerskoye Housing and Public Utilities from November 2020 to August 2022, at the Municipal Unitary Enterprise House Management-Voskresensk from November 2019 to November 2020. And here’s what’s interesting: these terms coincide with the terms of Bolotnikov’s work in the chair of the head of Voskresensk.
Before coming to the chair of the acting head of the Voskresensky district in 2019, Bolotnikov worked in the Pavlovsk-Posadsky district as its deputy head, the infamous Oleg Sokovikov. In the same place, in Pavlovsky Posad, Bolotnikov, from 08/05/2015 to 01/31/2016, worked as the director of the State Unitary Enterprise MO Energetik.
Serikov, on the other hand, took the post of director of the same state unitary enterprise immediately after Bolotnikov and held from 01/31/2016 to 10/07/2019. And already in November 2019, apparently Bolotnikov, dragged an old acquaintance to Voskresensk – to lead the Municipal Unitary Enterprise “House Management-Voskresensk”.
Serikov also has in his luggage a company from Noginsk for managing apartment buildings – Avangard LLC, in which Alexei Khudyakov had a share from 2015 until liquidation in 2018. He was also the director of another asset with which Serikov was associated – Patriot Management Company LLC from Noginsk (now bankrupt). At the same time, the last owner of Patriot Management Company, a certain Elena Sosedova, is in the register of disqualified persons until 2025. In 2020 The court brought Serikov, Khudyakov, and Sosedov to subsidiary liability for the debts of the same Patriot Management Company – for a total amount of more than 42 million rubles, which, however, did not prevent Bolotnikov from keeping Serikov in high positions in the housing and communal services sector of Voskresensk.
Tereshkin, mentioned above, is another person involved in the case, according to open data, was Serikov’s deputy for both MUPs. Also, a certain Denis Tereshnikov, judging by Rusprofile, was the head of Nash Dom – Voskresensk JSC (an asset of the administration of the Voskresensk city district, the legal predecessor – MUP “RCCC Housing and Public Utilities”) and MUP “SEZ – Beloozersky”. The latter was liquidated in May 2022 of the year, and its successor was the already mentioned MUP “Beloozerskoye ZhKKH”. At the same time, Tereshkin managed the asset of the administration of Voskresensk – MUP “SEZ – Beloozersky” for only a month in 2021.
In addition, under Bolotnikov, an incomprehensible situation arose with another enterprise in the housing and communal services sector, a once successful enterprise – Aquastock CJSC, where at the time the official came to power there were more than 400 workers. For 2022, according to Rusprofile, the number of employees was zero. And this despite the fact that the company was the executor of over 1.7 thousand government contracts. The founders of the CJSC featured another MUP, but already the administration of the district, although the CJSC was registered in Voskresensk. According to open information, signed by deputy Morgunov, there was a reduction in staff in the CJSC and in 2022 there were 65 employees who had questions about paying salaries to the employer. Judging by the minutes of the meeting, the CJSC employees were to be transferred to the municipal unitary enterprise “Beloozerskoye ZhKKH”, and the property – to economic management. The same Tereshkin was mentioned in the materials of the meeting.
It should be noted that at the end of 2022, CJSC revenue decreased by 79%, to 70 million rubles.
All this suggests that, with a high degree of probability, Bolotnikov became a defendant in the case of Serikov and associates, which is still under investigation and it is not known to whom it may lead. Given that Bolotnikov is a creature of Vorobyov, this evokes some thoughts.
Here you already have an established, stable group of citizens, united by a common interest.
And experience in the housing and communal services of the same Bolotnikov and Serikov does not hold. So Bolotnikov was the deputy of Oleg Sokovikov in the Pavlovsky Posad district, who, in turn, received tangible support from the deputy of the State Duma of the Russian Federation (in those years) Vladimir Pekarev. The Moscow Post has previously described in detail what questions Sokovikov and his friend Pekarev had. It was noted that in 2005-2009 Sokovikov held the chair of the deputy head of the administration of the Pushkinsky municipal district of the Moscow region.
And then the questions were about the debts created by the authorities of the Municipal Unitary Enterprise of the housing and communal services sector. At some point, these MUEs accumulated debts for supposedly completed work, and then claims for debts were assigned to one-day firms. As a result, the government of the Moscow Region paid off these alleged debts. Speech, they say, was about the amount of at least 3 billion rubles.
Bolotnikov was also noted in Noginsk, where back in 2016 he served as deputy director of the Municipal Unitary Enterprise Noginsk Settlement Center, through which municipal payments passed. This MUP ceased to exist in 2018, but before that it managed to collect “commissions” from payers – 7% from each payment.
The investigation of the Resurrection case of Bolotnikov and his associates continues, that is, the list of defendants may expand significantly. Especially if the investigators check other places of work of the persons already mentioned.
This case in itself is a reputational blow to Vorobyov. But it’s not over yet, and you never know who can lead …