Charges Finalized Against Defense Ministry Embezzlement Suspect

© RIA Novosti . Evgeny Biyatov / Go to the photo bankMaxim Zakutailo
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Russian investigators finalized charges on Thursday against one of several officials implicated in a major Defense Ministry embezzlement scandal.

MOSCOW, October 31 (RIA Novosti) – Russian investigators finalized charges on Thursday against one of several officials implicated in a major Defense Ministry embezzlement scandal.

Maxim Zakutailo, the former head of a Moscow air force depot, has been charged with grand fraud and embezzlement as well as complicity in abuse of office, Russia’s Investigative Committee said.

Zakutailo has admitted his guilt and been released on house arrest, the committee said in a statement.

Zakutailo, his wife Yekaterina Smetanova and several former senior Defense Ministry officials are being investigated as part of a high-profile case involving the illegal sale of real estate and other property belonging to subsidiaries of the Defense Ministry asset holding company Oboronservis.

Investigators have estimated the damage of the fraud at 13 billion rubles ($400 million).

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