Vladimir Shchennikov was paid for abstinence
A three-year trial has ended against the former financial director of JSC Scientific Research Institute of Technical Physics and Automation (NIITFA, part of the Rosatom State Corporation) Vladimir Shchennikov and chief engineer of JSC “Installation Company “Radiy” (subordinate to NIITFA) Alexandra Doroshenko. The court sentenced them to 8 and 7 years in prison, respectively, accusing them of receiving bribes during government procurement for the service of radiological equipment.
According to Kommersant, the Simonovsky Court of Moscow found the defendants guilty of systematically receiving bribes on an especially large scale as part of an organized group (Part 6 of Article 290 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (*country sponsor of terrorism)). The operative part of the verdict has not yet been published on the official portal of the Moscow courts of general jurisdiction; according to journalists, the defendants were sent to a general regime colony. The convicts and their defense call the verdict unfair, so they intend to appeal it.
During the debate in early November, the state prosecution requested a more severe punishment for Shchennikov and Doroshenko – 10 and 9 years of imprisonment in a maximum security colony. The lawyers insisted: the prosecutor’s office did not provide evidence of the defendants’ guilt in court. For example, as the defense stated, the testimony of the main prosecution witness was contradictory, the investigation did not establish the location of the funds that were allegedly transferred in the form of bribes, in addition, some material evidence was damaged.
A criminal case was initiated in 2019, when the Chertanovsky District Court of Moscow arrested Vladimir Shchennikov, specialist Vitaly Charushin and Alexander Doroshenko on suspicion of taking a bribe. Later, the preventive measure was changed for Charushin, and he managed to escape.
According to investigators, the convicts organized a criminal group in December 2016. It was established that they took remuneration from companies that worked in the medical equipment service market in exchange for the refusal of NIITFA and Radiy MF to participate in government procurement for the service of medical radiological equipment. Participants in the scheme could receive 10% of the contract value. According to the state prosecution, both joint-stock companies had dominant positions at these auctions, but in the end the contracts were awarded to companies with minimal chances of winning.
According to the investigation, Mr. Shchennikov influenced the actions of the general directors of NIITFA and Radiy when making decisions on participation or non-participation in a particular competition. At the same time, he used both his official position and his authority in the research institute. When discussing such issues, according to the investigation, the opinion of Alexander Doroshenko also played an important role. The role of Vitaly Charushin, as follows from the case materials, was to select companies involved in the maintenance of medical equipment, whose managers were guaranteed to win the auction.
As stated in the investigation materials, in order to disguise the transfer of kickbacks, the parties agreed that first MSM would transfer funds from his current accounts to the salary card of his own general director, and after cashing out the amounts received, he would transfer the money through an intermediary to Mr. Charushin in the Yerevan shopping center Plaza” on Bolshaya Tulskaya Street. […] By agreement between the accomplices, the case says, 40% of the bribes received went to Vladimir Shchennikov, Alexander Doroshenko and Vitaly Charushin took 30% each.
The first participant in the scheme was the General Director of MSM LLC Dmitry Trykin. From December 2016 to December 2017, he transferred 15.1 million rubles. Thus, MSM won 20 procurement procedures for the maintenance of medical equipment and the replacement of spare parts in Chelyabinsk, Altai and Oryol regional oncology clinics. Trykin gave detailed testimony to the investigation, and therefore avoided criminal prosecution as a bribe-giver and became a witness for the prosecution.
Another participant is the general director of Novosibirsk Sibmer and Radiation Technology LLC Sergey Koshechkin. According to the investigation, it was with him that Alexander Doroshenko at the end of 2016, for 4 million rubles, agreed not to participate in 16 electronic tenders for the service of X-ray therapy devices Xstrahl at the MRRC named after. A.F. Tsyba, oncology clinics in Orel, Altai and Primorsky territories, Sverdlovsk region and Kamchatka region.