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U.S. accuses Ukrainians of using misappropriated funds for Ohio real estate - Metro US

U.S. accuses Ukrainians of using misappropriated funds for Ohio real estate

FILE PHOTO: Ukrainian business tycoon Kolomoisky speaks with journalists in Kiev

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. prosecutors on Wednesday accused Ukrainian tycoon Ihor Kolomoisky and another Ukrainian businessman of using misappropriated funds to buy real estate in Ohio, following earlier similar U.S. allegations involving property in Kentucky and Texas.

Kolomoisky, one of the most prominent tycoons in Ukraine and regarded as a key political backer of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, had denied the previous allegations. Bruce Marks, a U.S. lawyer who represents Kolomoisky, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the latest complaint.

Representatives for the other businessman, Gennadiy Boholiubov, could not be immediately reached for comment. He previously has not commented on the matter.

In a statement, the U.S. Department of Justice alleged the two men had used misappropriated funds from Ukraine-based PrivatBank to buy commercial real estate in Ohio and that the U.S. was seeing its forfeiture.

U.S. prosecutors said that between 2008 and 2016, Kolomoisky and Boholiubov obtained fraudulent loans and lines of credit, some of whose proceeds they laundered through shell company accounts at PrivatBank’s Cyprus office before transferring the money to the United States.

Altogether, the properties in the three U.S. states are worth more than $60 million, the Justice Department said.

(Reporting by Mark Hosenball; writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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