Ukrainian Scandal Confirmed: Alleged Embezzlement of $40 Million Meant for Ammunition by Officials, Reveals Intelligence Agency

Ukrainian officials stole nearly $40 million meant for procurement of ammunition in an embezzlement scheme discovered in December 2023, Ukrainian counterintelligence authorities said Thursday.

An unnamed directorate head in Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) allegedly was at the head of the scheme that illegally transferred almost UAH 1.5 billion (USD 39 million) meant to purchase artillery shells for the Armed Forces of Ukraine to foreign accounts of an MoD-affiliated intermediary company, the Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) said in a statement.

“This amount was 30% higher than the value of an alternative contract concluded by the newly created Defense Procurement Agency,” the statement read in part.

The stolen funds were state funds, the SSU noted in the statement. The SSU together with the Prosecutor General’s Office and the MoD reportedly uncovered the scheme, recovered the funds, and returned them to the state budget. . .

The fraudulent transaction — meant for 100,000 mortar shells that were never supplied — occurred during the former Minister of Defence Oleksii Reznikov’s tenure, the Washington Post reported. Those allegedly involved in the scheme include Oleksandr Liev, who was the head of the Department of Military-Technical Policy, Development of Weapons and Military Equipment of the Ministry of Defense; the current head of this department, Toomas Nakhkur; and the head of the arms supplier Lviv Arsenal, Yuriy Zbitnev, according to the report, citing an unnamed security service official. (Read more from “Ukrainian Scandal Confirmed: Alleged Embezzlement of $40 Million Meant for Ammunition by Officials, Reveals Intelligence Agency” HERE)

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