It took five hours for the prosecutor to read out the charges against former head of Belgazprombank at the trial of Viktar Babaryka, Interfax reports.
Viktar Babaryka is accused of creating and managing an organized criminal group consisting of his deputies. The investigation believes that Belgazprombank top managers were illegally paid from 2004 to 2020. According to the prosecutor, the size of fees ranged from $10-15 thousand to $300 thousand or more. The prosecutor started reading out these data in court several days ago, when the trial against Viktar Babaryka began.
Viktar Babaryka’s lawyer Dzmitry Layeuski believes that it may take almost a month to announce all the charges contained in the 340 pages. Babaryka’s lawyer also said that the politician was in a good mood and in good health.
Viktar Babaryka, who decided to run for president in Belarus in 2020, was detained along with his son Eduard on June 18 last year. The ex-banker was charged under part 3 of article 430 of the Criminal Code (“Accepting a bribe on a large scale”) and part 2 of article 235 (“Legalization (“laundering”) of illegally obtained funds”).
At the time of his arrest, Babaryka was considered the main opponent of Alyaksandr Lukashenka in the election; he set a record for the number of signatures collected by alternative candidates for the presidency in the entire history of Belarus. The ex-banker was declared a political prisoner.
Six former subordinates of Babaryka are also on the dock. They are all charged under the already mentioned Article 430. They are Kiryl Badzei, who last year became the head of Belgazprombank instead of Babaryka; former deputy chairmen Syarhei Dabralet, Dzmitry Kuzmich, Syarhei Shaban and Alyaksandr Ilyasiuk; as well as former First Deputy Board Member Alyaksei Zadoyka.
Another defendant, general director of “Activleasing” Viktar Kabyak, was charged under part 2 of article 431 (“Bribe giving on a repeated or large scale”). According to the investigation, he gave a bribe of at least €2.5 million.
Viktar Babaryka “categorically disagrees with the charges,” while his defenders insist on “complete innocence. All other defendants admit their guilt.