Former Head of the Department of Municipal Property (UMS) of Pereslavl-Zalessky Nadezhda Utkina in cooperation with the deputy of the Yaroslavl Regional Duma from the Communist Party Konstantin Gridnevhiding behind a close friend – the ex-mayor Irina Strokinova 2012-2019 – carried out a major land fraud in the interests of the local restaurateur Paytyan, as a result of which the latter illegally received a land plot of 186 square meters that was in municipal ownership. Utkina also contributed to a significant reduction in the rent arrears for the land plot in the interests of the tenant Vechkanov, who is her lover. All this became the reason for initiating a criminal case in March 2022 against the head of the EMC under Part 1 of Art. 286 (abuse of power) and part 1 of Art. 285 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (abuse of official powers). What ended this high-profile case tells Rucriminal.info.
Despite numerous testimonies and collected evidence, on October 14, 2022, the senior investigator of the Rostov Interdistrict Investigation Department of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Investigative Committee for the Yaroslavl Region, Kozynkin, dismissed the criminal case due to the lack of corpus delicti. At the disposal of the telegram channel of the Cheka-OGPU and Rucriminal.info was the investigator’s decision to terminate the criminal case on 35 pages, which first lists all the elements of the composition of both crimes, but then concludes that there is no composition. All because Utkina, as it turned out, was a special subject – a member of the precinct election commission of polling station No. 1107 with the right to vote. Accordingly, the criminal case against the official should have been initiated not by a simple investigator, but by the head of the investigative body. That’s just up to the head of the investigative body – Major General of Justice Anatoly Shchurov – this material never reached, stuck somewhere in the Rostov Interdistrict Investigation Department.
Land for a restaurateur
Paytyan, a restaurateur, needed additional land to transfer his site from the category of “individual housing construction” to the category of “land of settlements”, the area of \u200b\u200bwhich was less than the area established by law of 1,000 square meters. In the summer of 2021, the merchant applied to the administration of Pereslavl-Zalessky to attach a municipal plot of 186 square meters to his land and was refused, because after the redistribution the territory would fall into two zones: public and business development and engineering and transport infrastructure facilities. This directly contradicts paragraph 4 of Art. 30 of the Town Planning Code, according to which, the land plot must meet the requirements of belonging to only one territorial zone.
After the refusal, Paytyan turned to his deputy friend Gridnev for help. It follows from the entrepreneur’s testimony that “he knows that Gridnev is a deputy of the Yaroslavl Regional Duma, he knows many people in the district administration.” “He [Пайтян] asked Gridnev to help him deal with the situation with his district, to which he gave him his consent. Some time later (approximately November 2021), Gridnev contacted him and explained that he needed to re-apply to the administration for the provision of municipal services to him on the redistribution of his land plot, ”the investigator’s decision says. Subsequently, someone in the administration changed the previous conclusion on the redistribution of the Paytyan site – now the document indicated that the land was located in a zone of public and business development and its redistribution did not contradict the current legislation. The modified answer was printed on a color inkjet printer, which in the department of territorial planning of the department of architecture and urban planning of the administration of Pereslavl-Zalessky is located only in the office of the head Alisa Mustafina.
The latter, as follows from her testimony, changed the conclusion in favor of Paytyanu at the personal request of Utkina, because she was “very frightened that she would be fired for her refusal to help.” “Utkina asked to change the answer, since Gridnev Konstantin is a deputy of the Yaroslavl Regional Duma, a respected person who constantly helps the administration and its head Strokinova, in connection with which the administration is obliged to fulfill his request. She [Мустафина] answered that, since the redistribution of this site is a gross violation of the law, she cannot provide such an answer, ”the investigator Kozynkin says in the decision. Then Utkina told her subordinate that in case of refusal, she would go personally to Mayor Strokinova with this question.
“Many in the administration know that Utkina has been on friendly terms with Strokinova for a long time. <...> One of the latest confirmations of this fact is that after being appointed head of the administration, Strokinova appointed Utkina as the head of the municipal property department of the administration as soon as possible and fired Stepanova, although the latter was a very good specialist and did not discredit herself in any way. In addition, according to rumors actively discussed among administration employees, Strokinova and Utkina are friends with their families, celebrate memorable dates together, and hold feasts. <…> So she [Мустафина] I took Utkina’s words that it was necessary to help and correct the answer <…> as an instruction that must be followed. <...> Her assumptions were confirmed by repeated requests from Utkina, constant reminders that Gridnev Konstantin is a deputy of the Yaroslavl Regional Duma, as well as Utkina’s hints that if she refuses again, Gridnev will go to resolve this issue with Strokinova, ” stated in the decision of the investigator.
So, after a repeated appeal to the administration about the redistribution of the site, Paytyan received a positive response and municipal land. Investigator Kozynkin’s decision to dismiss the criminal case states that “Utkina’s illegal actions resulted in a significant violation of the legally protected interests of the local self-government body in the form of disposal of a land plot with a total area of 186 square meters from the property of the municipality, the cost of which is 443 thousand rubles, as well as undermining authority of the local government.
Indulgence for a lover
In the summer of 2021, the tenant of the municipal land plot and at the same time the lover of Nadezhda Utkina Vechkanov called the UMS to inquire about the amount of rent arrears and “was very surprised that the amount announced by her [консультантом бухгалтерского учета Градиной], was very large, and he did not understand where such an amount came from ”(148 thousand rubles). “Vechkanov was dissatisfied with the amount of debt,” the investigator’s decision to close the criminal case says. Two weeks later, Frolova called Utkin into her office and began to ask her subordinate how to reduce the amount of rent. She replied that this should be done on the basis of additional agreements to the lease agreement, to which Utkina “asked her to reduce the rental amount without official documents, just make an adjustment in the Bars program.” Gradina refused, and in October 2021 she resigned from the administration.
Two weeks before Gradina’s dismissal, a new employee, Orlova, took her place, whom she taught to work, including in the Bars program. After the dismissal of the official, Orlova continued to work at Barca under her account. Orlova told the investigator that she had been instructed to adjust the debt on an A4 handwritten sheet without a signature or seal. As a result, the amount on the receipt dropped to 3,000 rubles. Calculations on the personal instructions of Utkina were made by the deputy head of the land resources department of the UMS Pantyushina, and sheet A4 Orlova was handed over by her boss Nyunina. “Do not follow the instructions of Nyunina, she [Орлова] could not, since she is her boss, ”the investigator’s decision says.
Interestingly, when searches and verification activities began at the UMS, Utkina gathered her subordinates and declared that she was the boss and “no one is firing her.” “Then she left the employees of the land department and began to say that a “rat” started up in our department, and that this rat should be fired, she also said that the department of land resources is a “drain tank” that handed over the head to law enforcement agencies. First days [после обысков] Utkina behaved very aggressively. Then Utkina began to spread rumors about the head of the department of land management Gladysheva, that she had handed her over to law enforcement agencies, that she was a “rat”, and that she would be fired. <...> The constant pressure on employees and the spread of rumors by Utkina destabilizes the work of the municipal property department. It is unbearable to continue working in such an environment,” says witness Pantyushina.
This criminal case against Nadezhda Utkina was also terminated, since the investigator indicated in the decision: “it is impossible to unambiguously determine the materiality of the harm caused to the city administration.” On March 22, Utkina filed a lawsuit for rehabilitation and compensation for “illegal criminal prosecution.” Investigator Kozynkin’s decision to terminate the criminal case was never canceled either by the prosecutor or by the head of the investigation department.