May 21, 2024


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Russian Deputy Defense Minister Timur Ivanov was accused of receiving bribes

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Timur Ivanov was accused of receiving bribes

  • Written by Christy Cooney
  • BBC News

Comment on the photo, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Timur Ivanov (left) with President Vladimir Putin and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu

A Moscow court accused the Russian Deputy Defense Minister of receiving bribes and sent him to prison pending investigation.

Timur Ivanov, who denies the accusations, faces accusations of accepting bribes “on a particularly large scale.”

Ivanov, 47, was appointed to the Defense Ministry in 2016 and was responsible for Russian military infrastructure projects.

Activists have long criticized the levels of alleged corruption in Russia.

However, such high-profile cases have been rare since Russia's all-out invasion of Ukraine began in 2022.

Ivanov is considered an ally of Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and has worked with him for many years. He was previously deputy prime minister of the Moscow region, where Shoigu briefly served as governor.

The Kremlin rejected reports published by some Russian media stating that the real reason for Mr. Ivanov's arrest was suspicion of treason.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters: “There are many different explanations for all this now… You have to focus on official information.”

He also stated that President Vladimir Putin had been notified of Mr. Ivanov's arrest in advance.

In 2022, the Anti-Corruption Foundation (ACF), the group founded by the late opposition leader Alexei Navalny, accused Ivanov of participating in “corruption schemes during construction in the Russian-occupied territory of Ukraine.”

Comment on the photo, Timur Ivanov denied the charges against him when he appeared in court

The Basmanny District Court in Moscow sentenced him to two months in prison on charges of entering into a criminal conspiracy with third parties in his role in supervising the construction and renovation of Defense Ministry facilities.

If found guilty, he could face up to 15 years in prison. Another man, Sergei Borodin, described as Ivanov's friend, appeared in court in Moscow on similar charges.

Ivanov's arrest represents a rare move against a member of Russia's ruling elite, many of whom are believed to have used their positions to amass vast personal fortunes.

Some Russian commentators said the arrest would be a blow to Shoigu. An anonymous source told a popular military channel on Telegram: “If he can’t handle it, he will be the next to fall. This guy is 100% his man.”