Support The Moscow Times!

Police Seize Land in Moscow Region Fraud Case

More than 130 plots of land in the Moscow region have been seized by police as part of an fraud investigation, state-run news outlet RIA Novosti reported Wednesday.

The move comes after a complaint to President Vladimir Putin during his annual phone-in about a suspected fraud case in the Moscow region town of Solnechnogorsk.

According to preliminary reports, members of the Sabidom building company sold shares for a number of new property developments but failed to fulfill their commitments and left the land empty.

The court has seized 137 of these alleged illegal sites while the investigation continues, said Irina Volk, a spokesperson for the Interior Ministry.

One suspect was arrested and charged by police at the end of March. The search for another suspect is continuing.

One unhappy customer contacted the president during his annual direct line phone-in to complain that the fraudsters had amassed a total sum of 4.5 billion rubles ($69 million) from would-be owners.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

As the only remaining independent, English-language news source reporting from Russia, The Moscow Times plays a critical role in connecting Russia to the world.

Editorial decisions are made entirely by journalists in our newsroom, who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We fearlessly cover issues that are often considered off-limits or taboo in Russia, from domestic violence and LGBT issues to the climate crisis and a secretive nuclear blast that exposed unknowing doctors to radiation.

As we approach the holiday season, please consider making a one-time donation — or better still a recurring donation — to The Moscow Times to help us continue producing vital, high-quality journalism about the world’s largest country.