Mansion of ‘warlord oligarch’ who ‘helped Zelensky get elected’ raided by security agency

The Ukrainian-born businessman with Jewish heritage famously helped to bankroll Azov, a volunteer battalion, known for having far-Right leanings in its infancy, which over the years got rid of some of its most notorious elements and evolved into an ordinary military unit.

The oligarch’s fortunes began to sour in 2021 when the US sanctioned him because of “significant corruption” during his time in office as Dnipro governor.

The sanctions were seen as an effort from Washington to steer Mr Zelensky away from the influence of powerful oligarchs.

Mr Zelensky clamped down on oligarchs a couple of months before the Russian invasion when in November 2021, he introduced a bill banning them from owning majority states in strategic sectors of the economy.

Last summer, Mr Zelensky reportedly stripped Mr Kolomoisky of Ukrainian citizenship, paving the way for him to be extradited to the US where he is being investigated for money laundering.

The raid at Mr Kolomoisky’s home appears to be part of a major anti-corruption sweep as Ukrainian investigators on Wednesday also unveiled corruption charges against Kyiv’s top customs official, while a former senior official at the defence ministry will face charges of embezzlement.

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