Lebedev Platon Leonidovich, a successful businessman in the past, and today a former convict, periodically comes to the attention of the press, which is interested in his opinion on various issues. What made him famous?
Lebedev Platon Leonidovich was born in Moscow on November 29, 1956. Nothing is known about his childhood; Lebedev himself does not talk about his private life. In 1976 he entered the Moscow Academy of National Economy. Plekhanov, from which he graduated in 1981. After graduation, Lebedev will get into the largest foreign economic company Zarubezhgeologiya, where he will work for 8 years. Such a distribution after the institute testifies to the outstanding abilities of a young man or significant connections, since it was extremely difficult to get a job at an enterprise of this level.
Lebedev and Khodorkovsky
In the 80s, Platon Lebedev met Mikhail Khodorkovsky. This meeting was, without exaggeration, fateful for him. They met during their studies, both were active and really wanted to find a useto their talents. Mikhail and Plato met during the period when both were engaged in Komsomol activities.
The end of the 80s was the time when the first business opportunities began to appear, and young people did not fail to take advantage of them. On the wave of commercialization of all spheres of the country, including the Komsomol, Khodorkovsky, together with Lebedev, created the Fund for Youth Initiatives. His goal was to make a monetary profit from holding youth events. At that time, such economic initiatives were welcomed, as there was a trend of transferring public organizations to self-financing.
Some time later, the foundation was transformed into the Center for Scientific and Technical Creativity of Youth. This is how a model appeared, which was later reproduced many times throughout the country. The center had the opportunity to engage in a variety of commercial activities, including the purchase of computer equipment for various government agencies, and to cash out money. The center, thanks to the efforts of Khodorkovsky and Lebedev, was able to get huge orders for the supply of computers, including for some ministries. The cashing out procedure became one of the most popular operations in the center, because in those days government agencies did not have their own accounts and could not earn money by fulfilling orders.
Khodorkovsky endlessly masters new types of business: from the production of washed jeans to commercial support for orders from state research institutes. Lebedev becomes a faithful companion of Mikhail Borisovich, together they begin to earn serious money at that time.
In 1989, Khodorkovsky decides to create his own bank. Platon Lebedev, whose biography is now inextricably linked with Khodorkovsky's business, in 1991 becomes president of Menatep Bank. This commercial bank was among the first to obtain a license to conduct foreign exchange transactions, and it has a huge profit on them. Later, Khodorkovsky decides to issue bank shares, Lebedev conducts a grandiose advertising campaign, many people invested in the enterprise, but the shareholders did not have to see the promised high dividends. The bank receives many state structures as clients, even the Ministry of Finance used the services of MENATEP. Lebedev was engaged in conducting operations in Swiss banks and in various offshore zones.
The beginning of the privatization of large commodity companies became a time of active growth of the bank, through various manipulations with loans-for-shares auctions, Khodorkovsky and Lebedev, represented by the bank, became the owners of a 90% controlling stake in Russia's second largest oil company, Yukos.
Since 1995, the interests of Lebedev and Khodorkovsky have shifted to the commodity sector, the bank ceases to be important to them. However, Lebedev remained chairman of the bank's board of directors. In 1998, during the economic crisis, Bank Menatep ceased to exist, part of its capital became the basis for the creation of Trust Bank. Platon Lebedev retained his position on the board of directors.
Platon Lebedev in 1996becomes a member of the board of the Yukos oil company, headed by his friend Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Then he became deputy chairman of the board of directors. Lebedev, together with Khodorkovsky, use various tax optimization schemes and increase the cost of Yukos several times over. In 2003, Lebedev entered the list of the richest people in Russia according to Forbes magazine, his fortune reached $ 1 billion, at that moment he owned about 7% of the shares of the MENATEP group of enterprises. He also managed personal stakes in Yukos shareholders, in total amounting to 61% of the value of the entire company.
In 2003, a case was opened against Lebedev on suspicion of stealing 20% of the shares of the Murmansk joint-stock company Apatit. Since Platon Lebedev did not appear at the prosecutor's office on a summons, citing urgent hospitalization, on July 2 he was arrested. Thus begins a new chapter in his life. He was immediately charged under articles on embezzlement and causing property damage, and a little later on four more articles, including tax evasion. At the end of 2003, Khodorovsky was arrested, and Lebedev's case took on a political dimension.
In 2005, Lebedev was found guilty and sentenced to 9 years in prison. But together with Khodorkovsky, Platon Lebedev insisted on his innocence, accusing the court of being politically biased and biased. The verdict was appealed, and upon review, the court reduced the sentence by 1 year. Lebedev was transferred to Chita together with MikhailKhodorkovsky. In 2007, the second Yukos case appeared, as a result of which Lebedev's term was extended to 13 years.
Fight for Freedom
All the years of persecution, Lebedev did not admit his guilt, repeatedly filed complaints and petitions in connection with he alth problems. The world community and the Russian opposition consider Lebedev, like Khodorkovsky, a prisoner of conscience who is being persecuted for political reasons.
In 2014, the court confirmed its verdict, upholding the need to recover 17 billion rubles from Lebedev and Khodorkovsky. In January 2014, the Presidium of the Supreme Court of Russia reduced the sentence to the served, and on January 24, Platon Lebedev, whose photo appeared on the covers of many world media, was released.
After his release, Lebedev said that he intended to do international business, but for this he needed a passport. He could not get it, as it still had multimillion-dollar pen alties.
The first time Lebedev got married back in 1977. The couple had two children: Lyudmila and Mikhail. In 2006, Lebedev, while in the colony, divorces Natalya and marries a second time, to a girl who already had a child from him. In this marriage, Platon Leonidovich also had two children - Daria and Maria.
Lebedev's son-in-law Platon, who was suspected of having links with the mafia, attracted media attention more than once. Lebedev himself did not comment on suspicions of possible links with Chechen crime. Ibragim Suleimanov, son-in-law of Platon Lebedev, was accused offraud and money laundering and was sentenced to a long prison term in 2007.