MOSCOW, August 12 (RAPSI, Alexei Afonsky) – The Moscow City Court on Friday reduced the sentence from 48 to 46 months in prison for Irina Yegorova, one of the defendants in the Oboronservis embezzlement case, RAPSI reports from the courtroom.

The sentence handed down to other three convicts, Yuri Grekhnev, Larisa Yegorina and Maxim Zakutailo was upheld.

Attorneys for former Defense Ministry official Yevgeniya Vasilyeva’s accomplices have filed an appeal against the guilty verdict.

“In the appeal, the attorneys claimed that the verdict was based on assumptions. The lawyers have filed to overturn the verdict and to have the defendants acquitted or the case be reviewed,” the judge read from the case materials.
Also, the defense lawyers filed a motion to replace the prison term with a suspended sentence.

The prosecutor has countered the defense saying that the court should keep the original verdict. The fact that Vasilyeva repaid the plaintiffs does not change the fact that she caused damage to them, the prosecutors argue. The claimants supported the prosecutor.

The Oboronservis criminal case was opened in 2012 after a major embezzlement scheme inside the Defense Ministry was revealed. This resulted in the dismissal of Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov.

Under the scheme, the accomplices, led by Vasilyeva, allegedly sold facilities owned by the Defense Ministry at undervalued prices through Oboronservis companies and several other private companies. The embezzled funds amounted to 3 billion rubles ($43.8 mln). The deals were closed as part of a major Defense Ministry reform program that was to close unnecessary facilities and functions.

However, over the trial, the damage was reduced by two-thirds to 1 billion rubles ($14.6 mln). The judge ruled that investigators submitted questionable expert opinions.

Vasilyeva was sentenced on May 8 to five years in prison for fraud, money laundering and abuse of office. Four of her accomplices were sentenced to prison terms ranging from 36 to 51 months.