The Tyumen Regional Investigations Directorate of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation has concluded the investigation into members of a criminal group composed of attorneys, practicing lawyers, and former employees of the Ministry for Internal Affairs, charged with 41 criminal episodes including offences under Article 159 (swindling) and Article 174.1 (legalization) of the Criminal Code of Russia.
According to the investigators, from 2013 to 2016, the members of the criminal group possessing information that no succession cases were opened after the death of tenants of apartments located at different addresses in Tyumen, the apartments had been unowned and they had illegally acquired ownership rights for a number of real estate objects in favor of proxies who had not exercised their rights for free of charge privatization.
The criminals had committed complex covert actions related to commercial transactions, which, at first glance, had had a legitimate character while actually being stages of a fraud. Via a court and on the basis of forged documents, a proxy had been recognized as a member of the family of the deceased apartment tenant and, therefore, such proxy had been rendered competent to use the residential unit with possibility of subsequent conclusion of a social rent agreement, in respect of the municipal apartment and privatization of the said apartment, in the favor of the proxy, which had been followed by illegal registration of the ownership right with the Tyumen Regional Directorate of the Federal Service for State Registration, the Cadastre, and Cartography.
Additionally, in the said period, the criminals had forged documents for disposal of real estate assets, on the basis of which the Tyumen Regional Directorate of Rosreestr had performed state registration of the transfer of title from deceased owners (tenants) of apartments to the proxies found by the members of the criminal group, who had acted as nominal buyers, and then the members of the criminal group had sold to purchaser in good faith the real estate property, the ownership right for which had been illegally acquired by deception and use of forged documents for fraudulent purposes.
Then, in order to give a veneer of legality to possession, usage, and disposal of the said property, the ownership right for which had been illegally acquired by them earlier, the members of the criminal group had arranged a number of deals for disposal of at least 15 apartments to purchasers in good faith, thereby legalizing (laundering) the property acquired in the result of the crimes committed by them, and used the earned money at their discretion, in accordance with their conspiracy.
The investigators gathered a sufficient evidence base; therefore, in the nearest time, the probe will be forwarded for confirmation of the indictment and referring it to the court afterward to be tried on the merits.