Ukrainian Ministry of Defense refuses to dismiss Deputy Minister accused of multimillion dollar embezzlement

The Ukrainian Defense Ministry refused to discharge Deputy Minister Ihor Pavlovsky, who is suspected of embezzlement of budgetary funds, as stated in the response of the Ministry to the prosecution’s request that was published by the press-service of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office.

The Office noted that Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak reiterated the need to combat corruption. However, the Ministry refused to suspend Pavlovsky for the length of the investigation.

The Ministry’s published response, signed by Poltorak, alleged that the dismissal of Pavlovsky may adversely affect the coordination of the actions of the Ministry's structural divisions.

In October, law enforcement officers detained two officials of the Ministry of Defense: the Deputy Defense Minister of Ukraine, Ihor Pavlovsky and the Director of the Ministry’s Department of Public Procurement and Delivery of Material Resources.

They are suspected of embezzling state budgetary funds in the amount of more than 149 million UAH ($5.49 million USD) for procurement of fuel for the Ministry of Defense.

The Solomensky Court of Kyiv initially elected the preventive measure for Pavlovsky in the form of a 24-hour house arrest. However, he was later released on bail.

  Stepan Poltorak, Ukraine