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The war in Ukraine. Two investigations into fraudulent activities to the detriment of Ukrainian companies

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After several weeks of intensive investigation by the Warsaw prosecutor’s office, the Polish armaments company returned EUR 530,000 for the drones that it did not provide to the Ukrainian army. At the same time, in Poznań, only a preparatory proceeding was initiated concerning another Polish company, which – although it took an advance – did not deliver fuel to Ukraine.

About the fact that a small defense company Level 11 first did not deliver the 200 ordered drones, and then did not want to settle the 500,000 euro advance payment with a Ukrainian client we informed at the end of May.

Express investigation

A few days after our material, the Warsaw-Prague District Prosecutor’s Office announced the initiation of an investigation into the suspected fraudulent offense, i.e. under Article 286 paragraph 1 of the Criminal Code.

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– So far, we have been able to interview the victim, all witnesses, and conduct a series of searches – one of the investigators tells us, asking for anonymity. Discretion is related to the fact that the Military Counterintelligence Service also carried out its activities in this matter.

Officially, we learned from the press spokeswoman, prosecutor Katarzyna Skrzeczkowska, that the effects of these actions are already tangible.

After initiating the investigation and taking a series of actions, the victim was fully refunded. This does not mean the end of the investigation. It is too early to decide whether the crime has not taken place despite repairing the damage

From the French to the GROM officer

Let us recall that Taras Troiak was responsible for the search for a drone supplier for the Ukrainian army. He is an entrepreneur from Kiev, and at the same time the head of the local association of drone owners. The money – 1.5 million euros – came from a collection organized for the army by a large charity foundation.

– I received great support from numerous Poles, from the prosecutor’s office, who is an amazing professional. I am very impressed with how the legal system works in Poland and that there are more honest people than fraudsters. I hope it will be like that too Ukraineafter the war – says tvn24.pl Troiak.

When looking for the equipment needed by the Ukrainian army, he first contacted the renowned French manufacturer of Parrot drones. Because he was interested in a model with good optics and thermal imaging that they had in their offer: the Parrot Anafi USAwhich was created in cooperation with the American army.

The drone was created for the needs of the US Army, as evidenced by the inscription on the packaging

Parrot Anafi boxThe drone was created for the needs of the US Army, as evidenced by the inscription on the packagingtvn24.pl

Vice President of Parrota Chris Roberts indicated his Polish distributor to the Ukrainian client. And the latter, in turn, recommended a bearing on Dariusz M. from a defense company known on the domestic market.

As we checked, it was a former GROM officer who ended his career a decade ago with the rank of major. He offered Troiak to sign two contracts – for the supply of six drones with the company he worked for, and for another 200 with Level 11.

– We have delivered six drones ordered. I didn’t know about the contract for 200. As soon as I heard what Dariusz M. had done, I dismissed him disciplinarily from work. In this case, my company is also a victim, so please do not provide its name – said the president and owner of the company in an interview with tvn24.pl.

Full advance payment refund

Level 11 received 1.5 million euros in advance for 200 drones, which it undertook to send to Ukraine. It did not provide any, and after asking for a refund, only EUR 900,000 was returned to the Ukrainian partner’s bank accounts, refusing to transfer 530,000.

The president of the company, Paweł Krzykowski, did not agree to authorize the statements given to tvn24.pl. According to his words, the transaction was not feasible, as Taras Troiak did not have “appropriate powers of attorney”.

“There were no omissions on the part of Level 11 in the implementation of the offer” – assured Krzykowski, who is also a former soldier, in a statement sent to us.

Hope the refund doesn’t complete the investigation. I fell victim to the scam and the point is that there should be no more victims of these people

Fuel for Ukraine

Almost at the same time – on June 14 – a notification of suspected fraud was sent to the Poznań-Old Town Prosecutor’s Office. In this case, it is about the Ukrainian Ród Foundation, which was looking for fuel suppliers in Poland for the army and humanitarian purposes.

– There is a shortage of fuel in Ukraine. I got involved in helping, I pointed out to Ukrainians people who deal in fuel trade – says the Polish entrepreneur and activist of non-governmental organizations in an interview with tvn24.pl.

In this way, the Ukrainians established contact with the company Gazpro Bis Sp. z o. o.

Disappearing Cisterns …

According to the contract, there were to be ten tanks. The Polish company wanted to pay for the entire delivery, in advance. Ultimately, the Ukrainians negotiated that they would only pay one “pro forma” invoice for the equivalent of almost EUR 40,000. Subsequent payments were to be made when the first shipment arrived.

– The money has been transferred. The next days and weeks are more excuses why the transport does not start from Poland. And the driver was sick, and this was missing some document. In the end, I lost contact with Gazpro Bis – says tvn24.pl one of the people who know the case.

– It is difficult for me to understand that this could have happened in Poland, in the European Union. We paid the money, received the invoice and were deceived – says Andriy Sawa from the “Ukrainian Family” foundation.

… and a disappearing company

The phones of the Polish company have been silent for several weeks, no one picks up the handset in the office, as well as cell phone numbers. The tvn24.pl journalist asked the head of the Poznań-Old Town District Prosecutor’s Office whether an investigation into this case had already been initiated.

– I cannot answer – Prosecutor Małgorzata Mikoś-Fita told us.

We learned from the aggrieved party that they had just been informed by telephone about the “initiation of preparatory proceedings”. – And that’s all that has been done in this banal matter – says one of our interlocutors.

Main photo source: TVN24

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