Current minister suspected of taking over state land – NABU

Law enforcement officers reported suspicion to the former head of the Verkhovna Rada Agrarian Committee, the current minister, who organized a scheme to seize state land worth UAH 291 million and tried to seize land worth another UAH 190 million, the press service of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU reported).

As reported on the NABU Telegram channel on Tuesday, the criminal group led by a top official included officials of the State Service for Geodesy, Cartography and Cadastre bodies, as well as persons who controlled the activities of these bodies, the so-called curators.

"Participants in the scheme ensured the destruction of documents on the basis of which two state-owned enterprises in Sumy region had the right to permanent use of land. Due to their absence, the regional StateGeoCadastre drew up an act on the unauthorized occupation of these plots. Subsequently, with the help of controlled officials of the regional StateGeoCadastre, the plots were transferred to the ownership of predetermined citizens under the guise of realizing their right to free land. Moreover, the condition for obtaining land ownership was the signing of an agreement on its lease to a private agricultural holding even before receipt," NABU sets out the details of the criminal scheme.

Reportedly, as a result of the transaction in 2017-2021, participants in the scheme took possession of 1,250 land plots with a total area of 2,493 hectares, the value of which at the time of crime was more than UAH 291 million. "They also attempted to take possession of 3,282 hectares of land worth about UAH 190 million, but they were prevented by NABU detectives and SAPO prosecutors, who conducted searches and seized the plots."

Now the suspicion has been reported to the organizer of the scheme, the current minister, two curators of the StateGeoCadastre bodies and the person who contributed to the commission of the crime. The presentation of suspicions to other participants in the criminal scheme continues.

The message does not indicate the name of the organizer of the scheme. According to media reports, we are talking about Mykola Solsky, now the Minister of Agrarian Policy, who was the head of the Rada committee from 2019 to 2022.