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Former MP Kolesnikov sentenced to suspended three-year term for expenses fraud

Dmytro Kolesnikov
Dmytro Kolesnikov

The High Anti-Corruption Court of Ukraine has found former MP Dmytro Kolesnikov guilty of illegally receiving compensation for housing rent totaling UAH 758,000 ($20,000), Transparency International Ukraine reported on Jan. 19.

According to the report, Kolesnikov entered a plea deal acknowledged the illegality of his actions and expressed remorse.

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The case, which had been heard at the High Anti-Corruption Court for over three years, led to a plea bargain with the prosecution. Under the agreement's terms, he is required to donate UAH 1 million ($27,000) to the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

The organization added that Kolesnikov was sentenced to a suspended three-year prison term. He is also banned from holding public office for one year and has been fined UAH 17,000 ($453).

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Furthermore, Kolesnikov returned the entire amount of UAH 758,000, to the Ukrainian parliament’s administrative department.

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The Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office stated in 2020 that from December 2014 to October 2018, the former MP "illegally received UAH 758,000 in compensation from the state budget for expenses on a rented hotel room in Kyiv under the pretext of not having his own housing in the capital."

Kolesnikov was ineligible for housing rent compensation since his parliamentary mandate ended in 2010, after being elected in 2007. He represented the now-defunct pro-Russian Opposition Block political party and served as the Minister for Industrial Policy in 2010-2012.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine