The Main Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee of Russia over the North Caucasian Federal District, basing on operative materials of the Main Directorate of Internal Security of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia and units of FSB of Russia, under coordination of the Main Directorate of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation in North-Caucasian and Southern Federal Districts launched a probe under Part 6 of Article 290 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, into bribery on especially large scale by an organized group, headed by the Chief of the Traffic Police Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia in Stavropol Territory, Police Colonel Alexey Safonov.
It was established that for several years the members of an organized group had been producing passes, not provided for by any regulatory acts, which they distributed for cash remuneration to persons transporting grain crops and inert cargo on the territory of the Stavropol Territory. The said passes allowed the owners of vehicles to freely transport goods in violation of administrative laws in the Stavropol Territory, including through stationary and mobile checkpoints of the traffic police.
As a result of the said illegal actions the members of the group received a bribe on an especially large scale totaling over 19 million rubles.
The massive activities were carried out with participation of operative officers of the Main Directorate of Internal Security of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia and units of FSB of Russia, with force support of Federal Service of the National Guard Troops of the Russian Federation Departments over Rostov Region, Republics of Dagestan, Ingushetia and North Ossetia-Alania, temporary operational grouping of bodies and units of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia and officers of the Main Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia over North Caucasian Federal District at residences of the suspects, in traffic police departments, officers of transport companies and at other addresses. They included over 80 searches, during which large amounts of cash, expensive cars, and items and documents of interest for the investigation were seized.
Alexei Safonov and six members of the group headed by him including the former head of the department of the traffic police of the Main Department of the Interior Ministry of Russia for Stavropol Krai Alexander Arzhanuhin, inspector of the traffic police of the Main Directorate of the Interior Ministry of Russia for Stavropol Krai Vitaly Melchikov and four civilians have been detained; the investigation plans to initiate a motion to place them into custody.
The criminal investigation continues, a set of investigative actions and search activities aimed to establish all circumstances of the committed offences and other involved persons is being carries out in cooperation with the Main Directorate of Internal Security of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia.