The sale was possible even though at that moment Ilan Shor was accused in the file of the biggest bank robbery of the Republic of Moldova and his property was seized. Only a part of it ... the Prosecutors put under lock, until the pronunciation of a final sentence, the assets of Shor and his interposed in the total value of 60 million lei. But not this plane of the about 400 million. “There is no evidence that it belongs to him”, motivated in this way. This even though Ilan Shor admitted that he is the owner of the company Air Clasica, the founder of the LLC Classica Air, on which the aircraft was registered. If the prosecutors would include in the list of assets liable to confiscation also the plane bought by Ilan Shor immediately after the robbery in the banking system, the amount that could be recovered from the pocket of the mayor of Orhei, but not from the citizens’ pocket that had no role in the robbery would have increased by 5-6 times.
It emerges now that the aircraft Embraer Legacy 650, which was used by Ilan Shor and his entourage for two years and a few months, not only belonged to them, but was also bought, at least partially, from the sources originated from the loans by means of which there were ruined those three banks of Moldova – BEM, Banca Sociala and Unibank, while all three were controlled by Ilan Shor.
The first payment made for this aircraft is mentioned in the account statements of a company registered in the United Kingdom, about which Shor declared that it belongs to him at a court hearing in the file of the bank fraud of 2014. It is Hezburg LLP. On October 15th, 2014, from the account of this company there was carried out a transfer, of 200 thousand dollars, to the aircraft manufacturer Embraer JSC, with the specification “deposit for the corporate type airplane Legacy 650”. Approximately two weeks later, follows another payment, of 95 thousand dollars, transferred to a leasing company of the United States. In the documents regarding this transfer it is stipulated not only the model of the aircraft that coincides with those of the plane of Shor, but even the serial number, which is precisely the one assigned for the identification of the aircraft that during the period of December 2014 – March 2017 made part of the fleet of the mayor of Orhei.
The fact that Hezburg LLP belongs to him, Ilan Shor admitted on January 15th, 2018, at a court hearing of the proceedings against the former PLDM deputy, Chiril Lucinschi, also condemned by the first instance in the bank fraud case.
The prosecutors used the turnovers from several companies to prove that the former deputy Chiril Lucinschi received several sums of money from Ilan Shor through the companies involved in the theft of billion from the BEM, Banca Sociala and Unibank. In the account statement of Hezburg LLP, the company of Shor, there are several payments made to Ipa International, the company attributed to Chiril Lucinschi. One of the transfers, of 75 thousand dollars, was made on October 23rd, 2014, and this information is on the same page as the advance of 200 thousand dollars, paid by Hezburg to Embraer for the plane. It is not clear why the investigators ignored this item in the turnover and did not use it as an argument in order to seize the plane of Ilan Shor about which they previously said that would have no proof of belonging to him. The Deputy Head of the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office, Adriana Betisor, refused to answer the questions.
Our question, “since when entered the prosecutors in the possession of the turnover of the company Hezburg LLP and why they did not use them in order to seize the plane Embraer Legacy 650, of Ilan Shor”, was sent in written form to the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office. We have no answer for now.
In order to demonstrate that the advance of 200 thousand dollars paid for the plane originated from a loan taken from Banca de Economii, we will present a few pages of the bank turnovers of several companies affiliated with Ilan Shor, through which money passed in a row, on the same day – October 15th, 2017. These documents were provided to us by Ion Cretu, the lawyer of Veaceslav Platon, another convicted in the bank fraud case.
According to the offshore account statement of Hezburg LLP, those 200 thousand dollars transferred to Embraer came from the accounts of another British company, and namely Genyral Trade LP. This is an offshore presented in the first report of Kroll auditors, as an affiliate of Ilan Shor and his companies that executed the theft from those three banks through lending operations. According to the turnover of Genyral Trade, those 200 thousand euro were transferred from the account of another offshore – Ardooks LLP. And this company appears as being affiliated with the so-called “Group of Shor” in the first report by the Kroll auditors on the bank fraud produced in the Republic of Moldova in 2014.
According to the turnover of Ardooks LLP, those 200 thousand dollars came from Bannyster LLP. In the offshore account statement of Bannyster we will analyze two pages, one on operations in dollars and another – in euro. In the first document we see that 200 thousand dollars originated from the conversion of 158 thousand euro. In the second we see that on the same day, October 15th, 2014, before the execution of the currency exchange, Bannyster received a transfer of two million euro from a LLC of the Republic of Moldova – Caritas Grup, one of the companies which Ilan Shor acknowledged that they belong to him and about which the Kroll auditors reported that had a major role in the theft from those three banks controlled by the current mayor of Orhei, convicted in the first instance.
More specifically, Caritas is one of four companies that together took from BEM the loans in the total sum of 13 billion lei. In 2014, this figure was equivalent to one billion dollars. Thence originates also one of the names attributed to the robbery produced in the banking system – “theft of billion”. Caritas Group is mentioned in the first Kroll report for 46 times! In an information presented to the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office in 2015, the special administrator of Banca de Economii, Grigori Olaru, claims that the damage caused to Banca DE Economii by the Caritas Grup amounts to almost ... four billion lei. This is the amount of the loans taken by this company, since June 5th until November 25th, 2014. One of the loans was taken just on October 15th, 2015 and constituted namely the amount of two million euro, transferred on the same day on the Bannyster offshore account, from which later a part of money constituted the advance for the plane.
In chronological order, the things were as follows: on October 15th, Caritas Group LLC takes two million euro from Banca de Economii that it transfers immediately to the Banyster offshore account. In its turn, this converts 158 thousand euro into 200 thousand dollars and sends them to Ardooks that sends them to Genyral Trade. From here money goes to Hezburg, and from Hezburg to Embraer as an advance for the plane Legacy 650. It is worth mentioning that all four offshores through which the money passed successively, were created simultaneously on the 13th and 14th of February, 2014, on one and the same address in London. All four had the same administrators and were dissolved, one after another, in the following year – in 2015.
And in case of another payment, of 95 thousand dollars in which it is mentioned the serial number of the plane used by Ilan Shor, the money was passed through Hezburg, Genyral Trade, Ardooks and Bannyster. This time, however, the sum came from another company of the Republic of Moldova, Storad Grup, recognized by Shor as his and presented by Kroll as the participant in the robbery in the bank sector. While Caritas was “subscribed” to the BEM loans, Storad has “passage” to Unibank. On November 3rd, 2014, the day in which those 95 thousand dollars for the airplane passed through the accounts of those four British companies, Storad made three transfers on the account of the first off-shore in the chain – totally more than three million two hundred thousand euro. All those three transfers are made from an account that the aforementioned company had at Unibank. Shortly before these payments, namely on November 23rd and 24th, 2014, Storad received from Unibank several loans in the total amount of about five and a half million euro.
In the turnover of Hezburg LLP there are mentioned also several transfers that might be related to the purchase of the plane of Shor. Approximately in the same period as the other two payments, namely on November 5th, 2014, an amount of two million three hundred thousand dollars was transferred to the account of the British company Wester Alliance LLP, which held then 100 percent of the airline company of the Republic Moldova, Air Clasica, founder of Classica Air, owner of the aircraft Legacy 650 with registration number ER-KKL. To Hezburg money came from Genyral Trade, and to Genyral Trade – from several sources. The greatest part of money, about one million 200 thousand euro, originated from the Moldavian LLC Contrade, another company that appears in the first Kroll report as the participant in the bank fraud, which Shor admitted that controlled it. Contrade, in its turn, obtained money, the same day, from a loan from Unibank.
We asked for a reaction from Ilan Shor, through his spokeswoman, but he asked for the question to be sent him in writing, in order to be sent to the lawyers of the convicted. We did just that, but an answer has not yet been given to us.
The plane bought by Ilan Shor using the loans taken from the banks which he controlled and which he destroyed in 2014 was used not only by his family, but by some authority figures of the Democratic Party. (29) For example, Deputy Chairman of DP, Serghei Iaralov, the entourage of the oligarch Vladimir Plahotniuc and an active participant within the rounds of negotiations of the government alliances after the elections of 2014. Also he is described by some commentators as the “coordinator” or “ideologist” of the theft from the banking system. People of the Iaralov family posted in a social network several photos with this plane, from a travel to Switzerland. On the photos can be seen the registration number, which the aircraft had when it was owned by Shor, and on one of the photos appears also Serghei Iaralov, near his children and wife.