2018 October 26
Anti-Corruption Oct/26/2018: Manvel Grigoryan announces he'll donate $10.5mln properties to state; IRS investigation charges 2 officials and 17 businessmen for bribery; companies that defrauded Defense Ministry have repaid; Yerevan municipal workers under investigation; Gas price invstg. continues..
All the accused are innocent until proven guilty by the court of law. Currency in Armenian Drams unless specified otherwise.
Manvel "Tushonka" Grigoryan, who was earlier caught with stolen state property and subsequently arrested, has decided to "donate $10.5mln (AMD 5.84bln) worth land and properties to the state". The government is looking into it. http://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/147119
The investigation of IRS officials results in charges being filed against 2 high ranking IRS officials for bribery and abuse of power, and 17 businessmen for paying bribes to public officials in exchange for illegally importing goods without paying taxes on 2017 http://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/147127
Few months ago, NSS raided 10 companies that signed supplies contracts with the Ministry of Defense but failed to provide the required items to soldiers, after receiving the funds. The damage was estimated AMD 1.1bln. The companies have already repaid AMD 339mln http://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/147156
Criminal case is launched against the deputy director of athletics school in Gyumri. He has allegedly embezzled AMD 17mln by registering 6 non-existent employees and stealing the salaries https://factor.am/94175.html
The prosecutor launch a criminal case against Yerevan municipality workers for selling a city-owned property for AMD 82mln, or 5x less than its market value. The property was sold for AMD 445mln by the new owner. http://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/147110
The Investigative Committee (not to be confused with SIS) has rejected Robert Kocharyan’s appeal to recognize him as a victim party in the audio leak case. The Committee does not find that the audio showed anything illegal being done against Kocharyan.
Reminder: Leaked audio call showed that SIS/NSS bosses laughed cynically about Kocharyan’s reaction during his arrest. It also revealed that they discussed the legal aspects to make sure the arrests were lawful. The SIS/NSS insist no direct pressure was made on a judge. The audio leak can be interpreted both ways due to the language used: a pressure on the judicial system, or a prosecutor telling a judge through legal channels that he believes the suspect should be given a jail time due to a certain evidence, something that is normal in the criminal justice systems. The NSS says the leaker edited the conversations to hide the parts where they more thoroughly discuss Kocharyan’s case to make sure everything is done legally. The call does show how they verify multiple times that Khachaturov’s arrest is lawful. http://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/147093
Education Ministry begins providing free vouchers to all students to attend museums, theaters. DASARAN.AM is where they can check the list of qualified institutions and reserve a spot. They predict over 1mln visits to be made. The museums are preparing tour guides for the students. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/952328.html
Deputy PM Avinyan says during his last trip to US/CA, a new agreement was made between a foreign research center and American University in Armenia to create a research center in Yerevan that will conduct studies and provide information to the government about various topics. The institution will involve the students of the aforementioned university. https://armenpress.am/arm/news/952323.html
Political parties are creating their MP “roasters” for the upcoming elections. Pashinyan has told his wife’s brother Hrachya Hakobyan, who is also an MP, that he won’t be on the list due to an internal rule that prohibits direct support to QP leaders’ families during elections. This was the same reason QP never accepted or endorsed QP Sasun Mikaelyan’s son as Hrazdan mayor (who still ended up winning). BHK will move the popular journalist Petros Ghazaryan and more younger candidates higher up on the list. HHK will hold a meeting to decide if their party leader Serj Sargsyan will be on the top of the list or replaced by someone else. https://factor.am/93985.html
Parliamentary gas-price investigation committee held another session today. Chairman (BHK) Mikael Melkumyan says the contract signed by the previous administration with GazProm was "humiliating" (BHK voted against it in Parliament on 2013). It limits how much energy Armenia can create/receive from sources other than GazProm for 20 years, by requiring a certain profitability for the company after they invested $700mln to purchase Hrazdan hydro'c 5th bloc and built 170km of gas pipelines. The committee will encourage the government to negotiate with Russia around this issue.
... They also want to find out why the gas delivery error-allowance was increased, thus costing as much as AMD 20bln/year to the consumers. They'll discuss this with the Ministry of Energy in a few weeks.
... reducing the electricity price by AMD 5 will cost AMD 27bln on the Armenian electric grid, but only AMD 17bln if the savings were to come from GazProm.
... when the border gas price was reduced from $189 to $165, that difference was saving AMD 9.6bln annually, but all those savings went to GazProm Armenia. When the price went further down from $165 to $150, that drop allowed the Armenian consumers to pay AMD 9 less per cubic meter.
... Armenian Electric Grid profitability is 17%. It has 11% operational loss, which will be reduced to 6% within the next 10 years. It will also reduce the cost of producing electricity, which is currently AMD 20 for Yerevan TPP. This efficiency improvements will help when Armenia and Iran increase the electricity transfers in future. Armenia will give more electricity and take more gas in return.
Health Ministry will increase the surgery cost subsidies for low income citizens by AMD 1.1bln http://panarmenian.net/m/arm/news/261539
Light manufacturing industry has seen a 30% growth this year. Most of it comes from smaller manufacturers http://panarmenian.net/m/arm/news/261562
European championship in youth weightlifting: Hakob Mjrtchyan wins gold, Samvel Babakyan wins silver, Arpine Dalalyan wins silver, Arsen martirosyan wins bronze http://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/147106 ---- http://www.armtimes.com/hy/article/147145 --- https://armenpress.am/arm/news/952425.html
Foreign-moreign stuff to piss some of you off before the weekend
The angry republican activist who masterminded 13 bomb-scares against prominent Democrats with non-functional but real pipe-bomb materials has been caught after leaving traces of DNA on the packages. His cell phone and social media tracking also helped the law enforcement to locate him. The man was already in the law enforcement radar due to lengthy record of violence, including bomb threats dating as early as 2002.
91- Theft ; 94- Domestic Violence; 02- Bomb threat; 04- Illegal ID ; 04- Controlled substance; 04- Evidence tampering; 09- Foreclosure; 09- operating w/out license; 13- Theft; 13- Battery; 14- Theft; 15- Probation violation.
While in custody, the suspect told the law enforcement the materials could not have exploded and his intention was not to physically harm the recipients. He is charged with 5 counts of mailing pipe bomb materials, threats, e.t.c. He could face 58 years in prison if convicted.
President Trump's critics have placed the blame on him for continuously criticizing the Democrats and their media allies with a harsh language. Trump supporters have blamed the Democrats for creating a dangerous environment by using violent rhetoric and calls for uncivility against republicans, citing the recent arson attacks against GOP offices, stabbing attempts and ricin-scare letters being sent to President Trump, family, and allies.
President Trump has condemned the bomb-scare saying "there is no place for it in our country."
Link to original report: https://www.reddit.com/r/armenia/comments/9robln/anticorruption_oct262018_manvel_grigoryan/
|2018 Daily Armenia Reports|