On this day, Europe defended the tax criminals from Yukos

On this day, Europe defended the tax criminals from Yukos

Party’s assignment of the German councilor of “Menatep”. The lost objectivity of Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger. The website Prigovor.ru reminds its readers of what happened on November 23, 2004.

On this day 19 years ago, on November 23, 2004, The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, “concerned about democracy in Russia”, organized an anti-Russian performance in defense of Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Platon Lebedev, accused, among others, of tax crimes. To put it simply, European deputies in the most blatant way applied pressure on Russian investigation and legal entities in the interests of the swindlers from Yukos.

The lead was played by Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, a representative of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. Her role in this performance was called “the rapporteur of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) on the Yukos case”. On repeated occasions, she came to Moscow to sort out the situation "objectively". However, there were no expected loud statements.

"In Moscow, I put concrete questions, connected with the abuse of the human rights with regards to the persons apprehended in connection with the Yukos affair. I will analyze the answers when I’ll be back in Berlin”, she told in May 2004 to reporters, who, having heard the high human rights guest, made a conclusion – “actually, she had nothing to say”.

According to the reporters of the newspaper “Kommersant”, conclusions, obviously, would be made only in autumn, when the processes on Yukos cases will be over. But, alas, the authors of this media outlet, taking, perhaps, for granted the cleanness of the intentions of European deputies, were a bit mistaken. Nobody was going to wait for courts verdicts on criminal cases of the first instance, there was no such task. The task was another – to pressure and intimidate the investigation and courts.


The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, evidently, following the European tradition, started to form the anti-Russian public opinion on June 22, 2004. It’s on this day that this document emerged. It was called “Introductory memorandum of the Committee on Legal Questions and Human Rights. Rapporteur – Ms. Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrebberger, Germany”.

In this memorandum, Madame Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger candidly confessed that she was utterly offended by the "official part" of her visit. "In the Office of the Prosecutor General and in the Ministry of Justice I was received by officials of far lower level than I had asked”, said the rapporteur demonstrating her indignation. Nevertheless, she admitted that “the officials, with whom I talked, turned out to be competent in their spheres, and they provided me with a lot of important information”. Still, an effort to interfere in courts' working procedures failed.

“The presidents of two Moscow courts, where the preliminary hearings took place (Basmanny Court and Meschansky Court) refused to meet me", said Madam. What she wanted from the presidents of courts without being a side in the case? And, in general, such spontaneous movements are the interference, at its finest, of that specific foreign citizen in the work of the Russian judicial branch.


However, this Madame also pointed out in her report that they didn’t trust her. “I rather in detail explained the objective of my visit at the meeting in the State Duma, but later I was surprised when I read an interview with one of those present deputies who said that he didn’t know the purpose of my visit to Moscow, as from my questions, in his judgment, was clear that I had already decided everything. In fact, I still have no opinion on many question, on which there are contradictions or incomplete information”, said the rapporteur with indignation, dabbling at objectivity.

It was already known from statements of such delegations that there is no use to expect objectivity from the part of the European community. They were also indignant at the “abuse of rights”, for instance, of members of terrorist groups, what had organized terrorist attacks in Russian cities. When in such, it would seem, unambiguous question Europe turned out to be on the side of radical underground bandits, then there is nothing to say when I comes to the tax criminals who had inflicted an astronomical damage to Russia, and they are billionaires at that for whom “democracy” and “civil society” are no more than a paid instrument to promote their interests.


And it was like that. The draft document carefully handed over, on November 22, 2006, from Europe to Mikhail Khodorkovsky’s lawyers, winded up in the press. No wonder that “presumption of innocence” about which Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger spoke with such a care, didn’t apply to Russia. The document, and that was quite evident, recited myths and legends about “every company did this” and “the arrest was selective”, as well as maxims “about justice”, and it looked like a usual anti-Russian piece of prop, and it was as such. As it was mentioned, the document was published before the end of the court hearings and was intended to influence the courts.


Moreover, a persistent impression was created – the final document of the PACE was created at the dictation of Yukos and “Menatep”. And not because it utterly and completely reproduced the information conception of PR specialists, American and Russian, hired by Yukos for hindering the work of Russian investigation and court. But because there were nuances. One of them was that Sabine Leuthesser-Schnarreberger – who would have any doubt – lost "objectivity" and started to cry that "the question is not about back taxes”, but about efforts “to intimidate rich people”, and thereat saying that in this case – oh the horrors – various state organs act in concert”.


The second nuance has all characteristics of an indecent “conflict of interests”, more precisely, of the European dance to tune of the tax swindlers.

It’s enough for that to read attentively a couple of newspapers. The first paper as an American one, “The Washington Post” which in December 2003 reported about a group of lobbyists acting in the interests of “Menatep” that was personified by Stuart E. Eizenstat, who had occupied high positions in the United States during the presidency of his “friend Bill” Clinton.

Among other persons in the team of “paid fighters for “Menatep” cause”, was mentioned one interesting man by the name of Otto Lambsdorff, a former member of the German Bundestag. For instance, in 2003 “Lambsdorff discussed the arrest of the Yukos boss and alerted about a negative signal effect for foreign investors".

There was also a mutual work directed at discrediting the Russian judicial system. As a matter of fact, our indignant Otto was also the German councilor of “Menatep” and concurrently the honorary president of the liberal “Free Democratic Party” (FDP).

Apart from that, according to a biography of Otto Lambsdorff, his nephew, Alexander Graf Lambsdorff, had represented FDP in the European Parliament from 2004 to 2017. And from 2017 he has been a deputy of the Bundestag. Evidently, the same attitude to taxes made them related. In 1987, Otto Lambsdorff was fined for tax evasion in connection with the “Flick affair”.

It’s interesting to note that from 1991 to 1994 Lambsdorff has been the president of the "Liberal International”. The same which now demands “immediate” freedom for Alexey Pichugin, sentenced for organizing murders and attempted murders in the interest of Yukos. Only one thing is not clear – when Otto Lambsdorff (according to his biography, he was a soldier of the Hitler’s Wehrmacht) became a liberal. Perhaps, in an American prison camp.

However, the German Lobbyist of “Menatep” didn’t live to see the second verdict of Khodorkovsky on charges of embezzlement and money laundering – he died in 2009. The banner now carries Sabite Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger who, up to the present, like a sectary, has been repeating the propaganda theses invented by the PR specialists of “Menatep”.

(See also the article “Open Russia” paid 8 million euro for acquaintance with a substitute judge of the Hague Court of Appeal”).

“We won’t wonder how much cost and have been costing such operations in Europe to the “main shareholders” and cashiers of tax criminals and murderers, for who so fervently cared and cares about omnifarious European institutions. There is only one question – why they are trying to pass off their commercial Russophoby for the defense of human rights", notes the website Prigovor.ru.

(See also the previous article “On this day, Yukos ceased to exist”. The Oil Company Yukos was redacted from the registry of legal persons. The website Prigovor.ru reminds its readers of what happened on November 22, 2005, and 2007.

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