A court convicted the ex-director of the state enterprise Servis of embezzling $147,500 in public funds, but the money and wrongdoer have evaded justice. Slidstvo.Info has uncovered how the director siphoned the money to Russia and fled sentencing by hiding in occupied Ukraine. The investigation revealed the director opened a bank account in Russia and instructed the money to be deposited there under the false pretext of fishing boat leasing costs. Once transferred, the account was promptly shuttered, vanishing the stolen funds without a trace. Convicted in absentia to nearly 12 years, the director now unlawfully resides beyond the reach of law enforcement in occupied territory, escaping due punishment for his crime.
This was reported by Slidstvo.Info.
The state enterprise Servis was located in Crimea until 2014, but after the annexation of the peninsula by Russia, it was relocated to Kyiv.
This enterprise is engaged in fishing in the ocean and coastal waters, and fish and seafood farming. Therefore, it has a number of boats on its balance sheet that it can lease out to earn money.
For example, in 2004, SE Servis leased the fishing boats Oleksiy Slobodchikov and Ivan Holubets to a Cypriot company for 15 years. This company was obliged to pay the state enterprise every three months for the use of the boats. A month of such use cost from $23,000 to almost $30,000.
In 2017, the State Audit Service checked whether the company had used public funds efficiently and found that the state-owned company Servis had failed to collect $147,500 in profits from leasing the fishing boats Oleksiy Slobodchikov and Ivan Holubets to a Cypriot company.
The State Audit Service initiated a criminal case upon discovering the large-scale theft of public money. The suspect identified was Yuriy Hurin, former director of state enterprise Servis. As the investigation revealed, Hurin corresponded with a Cypriot company in May-June 2014 to divert lease payments for vessels into a personal Russian bank account he had surreptitiously opened. Once the fund transfer was complete, the account was promptly closed, and the money vanished.
On December 1, 2023, the Lychakivskyi District Court of Lviv found Yuriy Hurin guilty of the crime and sentenced him to 11 years and 6 months in prison with confiscation of all property and a ban on holding certain positions for three years.
Hurin himself is currently in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. He has never appeared in court or contacted his lawyer.