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25 Jun, 2022 11:11

Police take action over Ukrainian bulletproof vest fraud

Law enforcement has opened a probe into sales of substandard ‘bulletproof’ vests to the army and volunteers
Police take action over Ukrainian bulletproof vest fraud

Ukrainian police have opened an investigation into a suspected fraud after troops and volunteers were sold substandard bulletproof vests, the office of the country's Prosecutor General disclosed on Saturday. A Kiev resident is said to have been running the sales scheme online.

The man, whose identity has not been revealed, sold “low-quality bulletproof vests for the needs of the Armed Forces [and to] volunteer organizations” which provide assistance to the Ukrainian military, the statement said. The suspect had advertised his products, through social networks and messengers, as bulletproof vests that contain armor plates made of high-quality industrial steel.

The man recruited several other Ukrainian citizens to his “criminal scheme” as “accomplices,” the release continued. The suspect himself has been taken into custody, according to law enforcement. It is unclear if any of his accomplices have been detained as well.

The vests that he was actually selling contained low-quality metal plates that did not meet the army's standards, the Prosecutor General’s office explained. The supposedly bulletproof vests were not in fact as described and were easily penetrated by bullets and turned out to be ineffective even against shrapnel and shell fragments.

Each vest was sold for a price amounting to between 10,000 and 16,000 hryvnas (about $340 up to $540), according to law enforcement. The Prosecutor General’s office has not revealed the amount.