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Russia. Fontanka portal: Yevgeny Prigozhin recovered his 10 billion rubles

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Russian investigators changed their minds and gave Yevgeny Prigozhin, head of the Russian mercenary Wagner Group, 10 billion rubles (over $100 million), the St. Petersburg Fontanka website wrote. The money was confiscated during an attempted armed rebellion against the Ministry of Defence.

Fontanka recalled on Tuesday that on June 24, during a search of companies associated with Yevgeny Prigozhin in St. Petersburg, boxes with 10 billion rubles and hundreds of thousands of dollars, as well as five gold bars, were confiscated.

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The investigators changed their mind

According to the portal, on Sunday morning the investigators did not plan to return Prigozhin’s property, but in the evening they changed their mind. On the same day, the head of the Wagner Group mercenary formation was returned the money and other assets confiscated in St. Petersburg.

Fontanka said the businessman was not present during the handover. According to preliminary information, he was in Moscow, and the money was to be collected by his driver, who had a power of attorney.

“It’s unlikely that the money will be counted on collection, because even with several machines it would take at least half a day. We also don’t know if the driver personally loaded the money, and if so, into which truck – the total weight of such an amount in 5,000 banknotes reaches several tons,” Fontanka wrote.

Services in front of the headquarters of the Wagner Group in St. Petersburg. Photo from June 24PAP/EPA/ANATOLY MALTSEV

Payments to mercenaries

Prigozhin himself, after confiscating the money, said that it was to be paid to the mercenaries and was to go to the relatives of the fallen as compensation.

The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) opened a criminal case against Prigozhin for organizing an armed rebellion after he announced the Wagner Group’s march on Moscow. However, after about a day Prigozhin announced the retreat of the mercenaries and their return to the field camps. Subsequently, the FSB announced that the case against the head of the Wagner Group had been closed.

Main photo source: YULIA MOROZOVA / Reuters / Forum

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