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Statement by Andrey Borodin, Founder and Former President of the Bank of Moscow

LONDON, October 29, 2012 PRNewswire

- Borodin calls recent accusations a “pack of lies”

“Last week the Russian Ministry of Interior and unnamed sources in Russia sought to create the false impression that various authorities outside Russia have newly commenced investigations or frozen assets belonging to me. The allegations are false and are clearly aimed at countering the evidence that the Russian authorities are pursuing an illegal and politically motivated witch hunt against myself.

“For the record, the only jurisdiction in which I have been notified of any such investigation into my affairs is Switzerland. This is old news. The investigation commenced over a year ago and has previously been reported in the media. My lawyers continue to work with the Swiss authorities to clear up the misunderstanding created by deliberately false and misleading information provided by the Russian prosecutor to its Swiss counterpart.

“In view of information now available it is clear that VTB’s allegations concerning the Bank of Moscow’s loan to Premier Estate were themselves an outrageous misrepresentation of the transaction. Documents confirm the loan was fully secured against significant real estate assets in Moscow, valued by the Russian authorities’ own valuation at over 10 billion roubles (around £200 million). This was as at the 2009 nadir in the Moscow property market. Other valuations prepared by internationally renowned valuation companies indicate that the current value is considerably higher and certainly more than sufficient to cover the loan. Also the Russian authorities have been forced to admit that they have absolutely no evidence to suggest that I in any way personally profited from the transaction.

“As for the other announced investigations, these are all false. The Estonian authorities have even gone so far as to deny the story. For the record, in none of the named jurisdictions (Bahamas, Belgium and Luxembourg) have any of my assets been frozen nor have I been notified of any new investigations.

“I am merely one of many law-abiding Russian citizens recklessly accused of fictitious wrongdoing by the same authorities. The total lack of evidence to substantiate their claims means that it is their credibility, not that of their victims, which is damaged.

“But, more seriously, their witch hunts and their pack of lies against business leaders are harming Russia’s economy and the tens of millions of jobs that depend on it. They deter enterprise and investment and force outflows of capital that would be better deployed in building new businesses in Russia. This institutionalised harassment serves no good purpose and the sooner more senior authorities intervene to end it the better for everyone.”