The embezzler of budget funds was left at large, journalists were arrested

The embezzler of budget funds was left at large, journalists were arrested

During the investigation conducted by the General Directorate for Combating Corruption under the Prosecutor General, facts of embezzlement of public funds in the organization of Formula 1 races in Baku were revealed.

According to local media, Chingiz Mehdiyev, who worked in 2015-2020 as the head of the sports operations department of the Baku City Circuit Operating Company, was brought to criminal responsibility.  He is charged with artificially inflating prices when purchasing clothes, equipment and other goods for marshals of  “Formula 1” competitions.

In addition, Mehdiyev is charged with transferring budget funds to companies registered in the names of his relatives. According to the investigation, Mehdiyev thus embezzled about 400 thousand manats. He was charged with "large-scale embezzlement", "money laundering", "official forgery", "abuse of official authority") of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan.

Nevertheless, the investigation treated him very leniently, without taking him into custody. During the investigation, a preventive measure was chosen against Mehdiyev only in the form of transfer to police supervision.

But law enforcement and judicial authorities are much stricter towards journalists and activists, sending them under arrest. So, during the investigation, journalists from “Abzas Media,” “Channel-13,”  “Toplum TV” and activists from the Institute of Democratic Initiatives were detained, who were accused of smuggling many times smaller amounts.

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