Crimean Brigands Grabbing Booty
Now that Russia’s snatching of Crimea is complete, the dirty business of plundering assets is kicking into gear.
The process, of course, does not involve lawyers and courts; it relies on the use of force. In the highest-profile hostile takeover to date, a truckload of armed, masked men wearing military-style uniforms seized control of a Simferopol car dealership March 18. The property, located on Balaklavskaya Street in the Crimean capital, belonged to the Bogdan Corp., a Kyiv-headquartered auto company with dealerships across Ukraine. Bogdan Corp. reportedly has close ties to Petro Poroshenko, one of the richest men in Ukraine and a member of the Ukrainian Rada. He was also a prominent figure in the Euromaidan protests in Kiev.
What person or entity wrested control of the dealership from Bogdan Corp. is difficult to discern. When journalists from a local television station, ATR, started asking questions, they were quickly chased away by the armed brigands, and one unfortunate reporter took a rifle butt on the chin.
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