Moscow, August 9 (Interfax) – Police have prevented a group of businessmen from embezzling 8 billion rubles in funds intended for Olympic construction in Sochi, the Russian Interior Ministry’s press service said on Thursday.
“The suspects attempted to steal more than 8 billion rubles by overrating construction costs. The embezzlement has been prevented thanks to actions by police,” the ministry’s spokesperson has told Interfax.
Two criminal cases on charges of severe fraud have been opened against the heads of commercial organizations, the spokesman said. He gave no further details.
Earlier the same day, the Izvestia newspaper reported that two criminal probes had been launched into violations during the construction of Olympic facilities in Sochi.
The newspaper quoted sources in the Interior Ministry’s investigation department for Sochi as saying that two criminal cases had been opened into attempted embezzlement of budget funds and that both cases would be sent to court soon.
One of the cases has to do with the construction of a bobsled track.
“The case was opened against the heads of the NPO Mostovik contractor on suspicion of intentionally overrating the cost estimates during the construction of an Olympic site. Embezzlement worth 2.5 billion rubles has been prevented thanks to police,” the sources said, the newspaper reported.
The second case has to do with 5.6 billion rubles worth of overrated costs in the central stadium project.
Both cases were opened following audits by the Audit Chamber.
[UA EUROPE EEU EMRG BUS]