Detention of Deputy Minister of Defense in Russia


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A deputy minister of defense in Russia has been detained on charges of taking a “large scale” bribe, the country’s top law enforcement investigators announced on Tuesday. The brief announcement from the Investigative Committee divulged few details about what had led to Timur Ivanov, the deputy minister, being taken into custody. But the legal statute that he is accused of violating is for taking a bribe “on a particularly large scale,” more than one million rubles, or more than $10,000.

Background and Responsibilities

Mr. Ivanov, a deputy defense minister since 2016, had long been in charge of military construction projects, including most recently the huge contracts awarded to rebuild the Russian-occupied eastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol, which was devastated by Russian attacks soon after the February 2022 invasion. He was also responsible for building Patriot Park, a military theme space outside Moscow that featured exhibits of weaponry and a Russian Orthodox cathedral that sought to cast the experiences of the Russian armed forces in a holy light. He was awarded the Order for Merit to the Fatherland several times.

Connection to High-Ranking Officials

Mr. Ivanov was known as a protégé of Sergei K. Shoigu, the Russian defense minister who is a close associate of President Vladimir V. Putin. The circumstances around the detention of a deputy minister with such high-ranking connections were not immediately clear. But the past pattern of such arrests has been that the person who fell from grace had run afoul of the business interests of the F.S.B., Russia’s security services, or a construction oligarch with even more powerful connections.

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