On this day, Yukos played an American card

On this day, Yukos played an American card

How the conversation with Steven Michael Theede, president of “Yukos-Moskva” was passed off as an interrogation. The website Prigovor.ru reminds its readers of what happened on November 27, 2003.

On this day 18 years ago, on the information field happened an indicative buzz connected with the name of the president of the company “Yukos-Moskva”, American Steven Michael Theede. First, the press reported about "the interrogation of the American from Yukos", and the next day it dashed off refutations, coming both from the Office of the Prosecutor General and the company Yukos.

“Yesterday evening the agency “Interfax-AFI” distributed information that the head of the “Yukos-Moskva”, American Steven Michael Theede, succeeding on this position Vassily Shakhnovsky, was interrogated by the investigator of the Office of the Prosecutor General Mikhail Besugly. Simultaneously, according to the agency, investigators carried out the seizure of documents in the office of the company. However, “Yukos-Moskva” and then the Office of the Prosecutor General refuted this information", said the newspaper “Kommersant”.


An approximate example of an unreliable headline looked like that: “The new head of “Yukos-Moskva” Steven Theede was interrogated by the General Prosecution. A search was carried out at his place". The investigation impinged, so to say, on something holy – on a citizen of the United States. Thereat, it was stressed in the news that “nobody summoned Mr. Theede for interrogation”. However, after some publications in October 2003 “batted Khodorkovsky with butts of assault-rifles” and after the juggles “with Khodorkovsky’s shares, secretly transferred to Rothschild, to say nothing of submachine gunners braking in the children’s shelter”, the instance with “the interrogation of Theede” was still not the most nonsensical.

Yet the purpose of such “news” is well known – in massages of that kind believe, some for extra money, various European and American politicians and activists ecstatically justifying with such slime all sorts of “human rights” reports and resolutions.

(See also the articles “On this day, Europe defended the tax criminals from Yukos” and “On this day, Obama, McCain, and Biden worked off Khodorkovsky's dirty money”.

The newspaper “Izvestiya”, in particular, narrated that the employees of the Office of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation had visited the American, referring to its own sources in the agency. Mentioned were the reasons as well as the format of the “interrogation”.


“The Office of the Prosecutor General examines the case of Yukos tax evasion committed with the help of several controllable foreign offshore structures”, told to a reporter of “Izvestiya” an employee of the General Prosecution. “They started to sell oil at an understated price, and from this amount, taxes were paid and duties, and then, after being transported abroad, it was resold at market prices. According to the information at our disposal, Theede took part in the development of this scheme, and that is why we decided to talk to him. And conjointly to seize in his office documents which are of interest for us. Before leaving, Besugly passed over to Theede a pile of summons for investigation with regard to 30 employees of the financial department of the company. The Office of the Prosecutor General stressed in particular that meanwhile (as of November 2003), this was not about bringing charges against Steven Michael Theede”.

(See also “Theede and other former managers of Yukos have legalized entrusted to them property of other persons”. and “Theede the millionaire…”).

The primary source of “the news about the interrogation of the American”, according to the published messages, was a certain anonymous source “close to the American Trade Chamber in Russia”, with which, evidently, communicated certain employees of “Interfax” and then presented as a sensation, basically, a routine investigation work – the conversation with leaders, passing over of summons for employees, and the seizure of documents, which, on creative impulse, some reporters called "a search".


"Investigative actions were carried out within the criminal case on facts of fraud and tax evasion by various companies under the control of the Oil Company Yukos", said on November 27, 2003, a spokesman of the Office of the Prosecutor General. “In accordance with the Criminal-procedure Code of the Russian Federation, the head of the company Steven Mickael Theede was given a formal notice on carrying out of documents seizure, and the documents of interest were given to us. Thereat, the Office of the Prosecutor General stressed that “the interrogation of employees of the JSC “Yukos-Moskva”, including the head of the company Theede, was not carried out”, he said.


As to the newspaper “Nezavisimaya Gazeta”, trying to understand “the background” of the event, it learned that an American passport is by no means an indulgence, including in the course of investigative actions.

“A foreign citizen, if he is not a diplomatic official, can be an object of various procedural actions as any citizen of Russia. There is no exemption and special rules. That being said, a foreign citizen has the right to demand the presence of a lawyer and a consul”, said in the interview with the newspaper Andrey Tarasov, a lawyer of the oil company. Thereat, the newspaper paid attention to the fact that “the investigative actions with regard to Steven Theede were undertaken in the evening on Wednesday, on the eve of the Thanksgiving Day, celebrated by Americans”. The media outlet as if hinted that “a source close to the American Trade Chamber in Russia” who had informed about “the interrogation of Theede”, could be in a condition close to the celebratory”. Otherwise, he would have distinguished an interrogation from a conversation.

Still, the key question in all this was touched by the newspaper “Gazeta”. “Having decided to give the management of the oil holding to foreign citizens, the shareholders of Yukos wanted to deflect the hit from the company. Have they succeeded it that – now it is questionable”, stressed “Gazeta”, describing the “adventure of Theede’s interrogation”, notes the website Prigovor.ru.

(See also the previous article “On this day, the Spanish “White Whale” swam past Yukos. The lawyer Fernando del Valle "provided help not only to nine different criminal organizations but also to one person by the name of Nevzlin”. The website Prigovor.ru reminds its readers of what happened on November 26, 2009.

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