The evidence gathered by the Khabarovsk Regional Directorate of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation was found to be sufficient by the court to sentence the Head of the Severny Interdistrict Department of Rosselkhoznadzor (the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance) in Khabarovsk Territory and Jewish Autonomous Region and his wife, who, depending on their involvement, were convicted of crimes under Article 290 (bribe-taking), Article 291.1 (mediation in bribery), and Article 174 (legalization) of the Criminal Code of Russia.
The investigators and the court found that, from 2011 to 2013, the Head of the Department had taken bribes from directors of companies engaged in the harvesting of wood and its export for timely issue of a phytosanitary certificate for quarantinable products. The businessmen, who had been afraid of the delayed issue of the permits resulting in the detention of rail cars with wood and related expected losses, had had to pay money to the accused. In total, he had received over 11 million rubles in bribes.
During the investigation, the criminal did not plead guilty and neither did his wife who acted as an intermediary in bribe-taking. The money had been transferred via a shell company owned by the wife of the Head of the Department. Then this money had been legalized under fictitious grounds (purchase of lumber), cashed out and taken by the Department Head. In total, almost 9 million rubles had been legalized.
The investigative support of the probe was carried out by officers of the Khabarovsk Regional Directorate of the Federal Security Service and Ministry for Internal Affairs.
The court sentenced the man to 10 years of imprisonment in a strict regime penal colony and a fine in the amount of 15 million rubles, the woman to 9 years of imprisonment in a general regime penal colony and a fine in the amount of 700 thousand rubles.