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Ministry of Internal Affairs investigates two criminal cases related to “Inter”

27.05.2015, 14:40

The Chief Investigation Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine is conducting the prejudicial inquiry of two facts related to the TV channel ‘Inter’. This was reported on the Ministry’s website.

To the Unified Register of pre-trial investigations, information was included on criminal offences as stipulated in  part 1, article 171 (obstruction to legal professional activities of journalists), and part 2, article 364 (abuse of power or official position) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

As police discovered, in 1997 and 1999 unidentified officials of the State Property Fund of Ukraine, abusing their positions, illegally transferred to private owners 20% shares of the TV channel “Inter.” As a result, the government suffered over 800 million US dollars of damages.

Also, police says, during 2010-2011 unidentified individuals among the founders of the TV channel “Inter” were influencing the editorial policy of the channel journalists, controlling the content of the broadcast information.

The pre-trial investigation is ongoing.

As IMI informed earlier, MPs from the “People's Front” requested that the General Prosecutor's Office interrogate Opposition Bloc MP Serhiy Liovochkin and Ukrainian businessman Dmytro Firtash regarding the sale of shares of “Inter”.

In February of 2013, Dmytro Firtash in partnership with the head of the Presidential Administration Serhiy Liovochkin purchased Inter Media Group from the First Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine Valeriy Khoroshkovskyi. The seller explained his decision by being unable to secure development of the group, and, according to the seller, the value of the company then was estimated as $2.5 billion.

On February 3, 2015, Group DF belonging to Dmytro Firtash released information that  GDF Media Limited and Inter Media Group Limited controlled by the former, now owned 100% of "Inter", after buying 29% from "First channel", and 10% from LLC "Pegas Telebachennia" (Ukraine).

Group DF’s press service also clarified that GDF Media Limited yet in February of 2013 received in the Anti-Monopoly Committee of Ukraine a preliminary permit to control the company group including the TV channel "Inter", so it did not need additional permits for the contract with "First channel".

On February 3, the shares of "TV channel "Inter" owned by OJSC "First channel" (Moscow, RF), comprising 29% of total shares, were re-registered to Cyprus company Vacea Ventures Limited.

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