Uzbek deputy mayor under trial on embezzlement charges

Former second deputy mayor of Angren Said-Ibrahim Saynazirov
The trial of the second deputy mayor of the town of Angren in Tashkent Region, Said-Ibrahim Saynazirov, opened in Tashkent on 12 January.

A source close to the Angren mayor’s office has said on condition on anonymity that the first court hearing into the case of Said-Ibrahim Saynazirov was held in Tashkent on 12 January.

The source did not clarify which exact court was hearing the case, but said that the hearing was held behind closed doors. He also said the second deputy mayor of Angren was charged with corruption and bribery.

Saynazirov was arrested on 23 November 2012. During the investigation, he was kept in the pre-trial detention centre of the National Security Service (SNB) in Tashkent, but was transferred to the Tashkent prison before his trial.

According to a source in Angren, Saynazirov might have been caught for mishandling the sale of social products, such as flour and cotton seed oil which regional administrations receive to distribute among the needy families at lower prices.

In Angren, neighbourhood committees have sold only oil for the past several years while flour was sold at a much higher price.

Now the second deputy mayor of Angren, according to unconfirmed reports, proved to have been involved in this scheme.

According to other reports, Saynazirov was also accused of fraud in “cotton businesses” since he also headed the town’s headquarters for cotton harvesting.

Accusations were brought against Saynazirov because money was collected from students and workers who did not want to go to pick cotton during cotton harvesting campaigns in Angren. Some of these funds was pocketed by the deputy mayor, according to rumours.

Saynazirov pleaded guilty during the hearings.

A lawyer of the Angren mayor’s office has been arrested and is also undergoing trial for the same case with Saynazirov. According to unconfirmed reports, he is accused of mediating Saynazirov’s bribes.