Lviv Customs officials exposed in bribery — State Bureau of Investigation

06.04.2023, 15:13
Lviv Customs officials exposed in bribery — State Bureau of Investigation  - Photo

Employees of the State Bureau of Investigation exposed a scheme of large-scale extortions from all small entrepreneurs importing consumer goods to Ukraine at the "Yavoriv" customs post of the Lviv customs office, the press service of the SBI reports.

According to the investigation, acting head of the customs clearance department, two state inspectors worked on the same shift and demanded money from almost every vehicle.

"They set a 'toll' from UAH 500 ($14) to 1,000 ($28), depending on the volume of the goods and the capacity of the vehicle. For those who refused to pay, customs officials created artificial obstacles during the registration process at the border crossing," the Bureau said in a statement.

The officials engaged a civilian to collect money.

According to preliminary estimates, the monthly earnings of customs officers amounted to at least UAH 500,000 ($13,534), and the scheme itself existed for about three years.

During the searches, the SBI officers seized more than UAH 220,000 ($5,955) in cash in various currencies from the suspects.

Four members of the group were notified of the suspicion of obtaining an illegal benefit (Part 3 of Article 368 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine). The sanction of the article provides for punishment in the form of deprivation of liberty for a term of up to 10 years.

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