Murder of Magadan Region's Governor Might Have Been Motivated by Gold

According to investigators' theory, the murder of Valentin Tsvetkov, the Magadan region's governor, which took place in Moscow on Friday, might have been concerned with his official activities, particularly business ones on the Magadan region's territory, a source in law enforcement bodies reported. Virtually all assassination attempts on Russia's political and public figures have been carried out on these grounds, the source said.

The Magadan region is Russia's main gold-mining region. However, two years ago 20-30% of the precious metal was still in shadow turnover, mass media report. On the ground of "a gold rush" serious conflicts broke out there, and Vladimir Tsvetkov was involved in these too. That was the time when fierce opposition between the governor and regional law enforcement authorities arose. The conflict was set off when the Magadan Region's Precious Metals Fund state unitary enterprise with over 170 kg of gold in store was arrested. According to the leadership of the regional UVD /Interior Department/, the Fund was established illegally.

"Gold confiscated, the UVD bodies subject gold-diggers' artels to hunger, and enterprises - to collapse," Tsvetkov said in his turn.

Materials of the inspection, conducted by the Audit Chamber in the Magadan region in 2001 (available at the official site of the body), reveal the facts of misuse of funds from the so-called "gold credits", that had been allocated to gold-mining regions in 1992-2000. "Instead of financing development of the Kubaka gold deposit the Magadan region's administration loaned the "gold credit" funds to the tune of $42.1 mln to five Russian founders of the Omolonskaya Gold Company joint Russian-American enterprise," the materials read.

Moreover, the administration of the Magadan region misappropriated the "gold credit" funds of $15.5 mln, allotted to develop gold-mining in the region, to purchase cars, build a house and acquire property for Magadan's former chief Karpenko, the Audit Chamber's report reads.

According to the Audit Chamber, "the Magadan region's administration did not return the funds to the federal budget for repayment, but used them not once to solve urgent problems and loaned them to different organizations at bearing interest /3%- to 20% annual interest/ by the region's governor Valentin Tsvetkov."

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Author`s name Editorial Team