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Moldova. The police confiscated over one million euros from participants of the pro-Russian congress

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Moldovan police confiscated over one million euros at the airport in Chisinau from participants of the pro-Russian opposition congress returning to the country from Moscow. The “couriers” were mainly elderly people from autonomous Gagauzia.

Moldovan police reported that they confiscated a total of over one million euros in various currencies at the Chisinau airport from participants of the Moscow congress of pro-Russian forces. The police are convinced that this money comes from the fugitive oligarch Ilan Sor, sentenced to 15 years in prison and wanted in Moldova.

On Sunday, Sor organized a congress of pro-Russian forces in Moldova associated with him, financed and led by him in Moscow. Among others there was the Bashkan (leader) of autonomous Gagauzia, Evgenia Gutul, and members of the Renaissance party, as well as a number of other “oppositionists”.

Chisinau airport, MoldovaParasyusha / Shutterstock.com

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– The criminal group tried to bring particularly large sums of money to Moldova through couriers. An investigation into smuggling has been initiated, said Victor Furtuna, deputy head of the prosecutor's department for combating organized crime.

– On the night of April 22-23, over 150 searches were carried out, including 137 at the airport and 27 in the territory of Moldova. 62,000 Russian rubles, 3,070 euros and 1.1 million dollars were collected. In addition, 128 phones were confiscated, he added.

Police chief Viorel Cernauteanu said the people who transported the money received 300-500 euros for it. Some of them managed to transfer the money to collectors. “The couriers are older citizens. Previously, young people were exploited, now older people, mainly from Gagauzia,” he explains.

Sor is the main “organizer” of pro-Russian activities in Moldova

Pro-Kremlin propaganda media presented the airport action and confiscations as an attack on the “opposition”. Russian propaganda is currently paying a lot of attention to pro-Russian forces, which, among others, they announce the release of Moldova from the “misfortune of Eurointegration” and accuse the pro-Western government of “acting to the detriment of Moldovans.”

According to the authorities in Chisinau and experts, Moscow has chosen Sor as the main “organizer” of pro-Russian activities in Moldova, the aim of which is to destabilize and prevent the country from joining the EU.

“Sor is a convicted criminal. Not only was he convicted by a final judgment for participating in the theft of one billion dollars from Moldovan banks in 2014, but he is on sanctions lists (including the USA, Great Britain and EU countries, including Poland) for his activities aimed at undermining democracy in Moldova or destabilizing the situation in this country (with the help of Russian oligarchs). The mere participation in the congress organized by Sora is grounds for interrogation,” Kamil Całus, an expert at the Center for Eastern Studies, described on Platform X.

“Sor is known for supporting his political circles financially, among others with cash brought to Moldova from Russia by 'friendly' people. Moldovan services regularly confiscate quite large amounts of money, intended to finance parties representing Sor. Unfortunately , this is just a drop in the ocean. A large part of the funds goes to Moldova via cryptocurrencies. The services also do not rule out that a lot of cash comes to the country in diplomatic luggage,” Całus wrote.

Main photo source: Parasyusha / Shutterstock.com

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