: Ukraine's anti-corruption agency to probe interior minister's phone calls

14:52 Aug. 21, 2016

Ukraine's anti-corruption agency to probe interior minister's phone calls

Arsen Avakov, Ukraine's interior minister. (UNIAN Photo)

Avakov suspected of arranging the purchase of backpacks for the army from a company connected to his son

Kyiv's Solomiansky district court has issued a ruling allowing detectives from the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU) to investigate phone calls made by Ukraine's Interior Minister, Arsen Avakov, in a case related to the purchasing of backpacks for the Interior Ministry from a company which is believed to be connected to his son Oleksandr.

NABU detectives will analyze data from phone calls made by the minister from June 2014 to August 2016.

The court ruling is valid for one month from the date of its issuance.

Former deputy interior minister Serhiy Chobotar and Avakov's son Oleksandr have been named as part of a criminal case focusing on the procurement of 6,000 backpacks at an inflated price for the Interior Ministry.

NABU investigators previously gained access to the bank accounts of Dniprovend Company, which had supplied backpacks for the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine.

In February a video was released showing two people, including one who looked like Avakov's son, with a person who appeared to be the former deputy interior minister Serhiy Chobotar, as they were reportedly discussing the need to purchase the said backpacks. It was also reported that Dniprovend Company was linked to Kharkiv resident Volodymyr Lytvyn, who is thought to be a friend of Oleksandr Avakov.

Reporting by UNIAN.

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