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Russia recoups $79 million by flogging real estate, cars and luxury items confiscated from notorious FSB Colonel Cherkalin

Russia recoups $79 million by flogging real estate, cars and luxury items confiscated from notorious FSB Colonel Cherkalin
Russia's budget has gotten a $79 million boost after the sale of seized property of FSB Colonel Kirill Cherkalin, who was accused of fraud and bribery. In 2019, a search of his houses made headlines after $160 million was found.

“Cherkalin's property seized by the court, including expensive cars, luxury goods and real estate, has been sold on the international market,” a source told Moscow news agency TASS. “After currency exchange, the funds received were returned to the Russian budget.”

Overall, the confiscated items were sold for more than 6 billion rubles ($79 million).

Cherkalin earned his fortune through his corrupt work at the Federal Security Service's (FSB) so-called Department K, the section for investigating financial crimes. Prosecutors allege he took bribes for settling problems with the Central Bank. In particular, he was accused of accepting $850,000 in bungs from a commercial firm in exchange for providing protection from 2012 to 2015.

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The FSB colonel became notorious in May 2019, after a raid of his property uncovered 12 billion rubles ($160 million), beating the previous record set by ex-police colonel Dmitry Zakharchenko, who was found with 8.5 billion rubles in 2016. Videos of Cherkalin’s bags of cash went viral. At the end of last year, a Moscow court accepted the Prosecutor General's request to sell the seized property, including several apartments, houses, land plots and cars. 

As well as receiving bribes, Cherkalin is also facing charges of large-scale fraud of at least 490 million rubles ($6.4 million), along with two former FSB officers, Dmitry Frolov and Andrei Vasiliev. According to prosecutors, the officers misled businessman Sergei Glyadelkin into thinking that he could be prosecuted, causing him to transfer his share of Yurpromconsulting, a company involved in construction, to them.

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