Activity of criminal community whose members evaded over 450 million rubles worth customs duties broken up

The Main Investigations Directorate of the Russia’s Investigative Committee based on the files provided by the Federal Customs Service and Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation has opened an investigation against Dmitry Zarubin, Oleg Panov, Oleg Nikonov, Irina Zarubina, Lilia Vorobyova, Svetlana Yakovleva, Vladislav Bagayev, Yana Shirokova, Anastasia Pepoyeva, Aleksey Lantsetov and others. Depending on the role of each one they are charged with crimes under parts 1 and 2 of article 210 of the RF Penal Code (organization of a criminal community (criminal organization) or membership in it) and part 4 of article 194 (evasion of paying customs duties).

According to investigators, Zarubin set up a criminal community in order to commit felonies in the area of business and involved the said people as heads of structural divisions and members of the said criminal organization. In 2015, members of the community evaded customs duties levied from organizations on a grand scale.

According to their scheme, the members of the community registered and attracted legal entities engaged in wholesale trade, transportation services and other legal activities. Then using controlled firms they imported consumer goods and electric devices in the territory of the Customs Union using forged documents. The documents listed the goods with low tax base (the so-called cover goods), crushed granite, items made of plain concrete and others.

Then, the members of the criminal community, using the procedure of inland customs transit, on the way from the border to the customs control checkpoint, placed the truck with the goods in a warehouse controlled by the community. There the criminals ripped off the seals and unloaded the goods, replacing them with cover goods listed in shipping documents showed during the inland customs transit procedure. After that the cargo hold of the truck was sealed with forged seals and continued its way to the customs control checkpoint. Meanwhile the consumer goods and electronic devices were loaded to another truck which together with forged inland transportation headed for recipients. The cover goods after the customs control returned to the warehouse for being used in the scheme again.

According to investigators, by illegally importing over 1.5 billion rubles worth consumer goods to the Customs Union, the accused evaded paying over 450 million rubles of customs duties.

In order to gather evidence and identify all members of the community, investigators conducted searches in residences of the accused and their offices in Saint Petersburg and Leningrad Region. They confiscated: about 500 thousand US dollars and about 200 thousand euro, archived documents, stamps and facsimile for firms, used in the scheme, personal computers containing information on accounting and financial flows of the community, and other evidence relevant of the investigation.

At present all of the accused are under restraint. The investigation is ongoing.

Head of Media Relations                                                                                                                              V.I. Markin