Navalny vs. The Seagull, Act IV

Moscow Art Theatre The Seagull premiere December 17 1898 directed by Konstantin Stanislavsky and Vladimir Nemirovich

This piece concludes my re-telling of the Navalny-Chaika catfight, as a drama in Four Acts.

In this conclusion, I focus on General Prosecutor Yury Chaika’s defense, or maybe lack of defense, against the serious allegations which have been made again him.

Ultimately, Chaika doesn’t have to make a defense.  He is a powerful man, in a powerful position.  He reports to the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin.  Putin is the only man who has the power to fire him.  And Putin has indicated that he will take Chaika’s side.  Putin is known for being loyal to those who are loyal to him.  American-funded NGO’s fuss that “Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the Russian government wasn’t interested in the dealings of Chaika’s sons and emphasized their affairs had nothing to do with Chaika himself….”  In other words, the boys are bad, but these bad apples fell from a nice clean tree.

 Olga Strikes Back

Please recall that Olga Lopatina is the ex-wife of Gennady Lopatin.  And Gennady Lopatin is the Deputy Prosecutor, serving under Chaika.  So, according to this piece, Olga has filed a lawsuit against Alexei Navalny, alleging that the latter’s movie “Chaika” is libellous and has spoiled her reputation as a business-woman.

Here is what her  attorney has to say, his name is Vladislav Grib, of the law firm “Semenyako, Grib and Partners”, and by the way, in Russian “Grib” means “Mushroom”, which simply invites bad puns:

Grib

Attorney Grib advises his client. (approximate visualization)

“My client Olga Alekseevna Lopatina has filed a suit in the Lublinsky Regional Court of city of Moscow.  The suit is to defend her honor, dignity and business reputation.  It claims as libel and seeks to stop the publication of (this) information, and also to purge this information from published works; and also seeks monetary compensation for the moral harm done against her by the defendants, A. Navalny, G. Alburov, L. Sobol, and the NGO Anti-Corruption Fund.”

Sergei Tsapok, shown on the right: a typical Russian mobster

Lopatina denies that she is the co-owner, or has anything to do with, the company “Kuban Sugar”.  Recall that Navalny alleges that Olga is a co-owner of this sugar factory, along with Angela-Maria Tsapok and Natalia Tsepovyaz, the wives of, respectively, the bandits Sergei Tsapok and Vyacheslav Tsepovyaz, the latter two mobsters responsible for a killing spree which took the lives of 12 people in the town of Kushchevka in 2010.

Implication being that the bandits set their wives up with this sweet little sugar  business, so that they could earn extra “pin money” for the gangsta molls and their families.

But according to Mushroom Guy:

“Kuban Sugar, from the moment it was registered in 2008, never actually conducted any business.  There was no activity, no financial reports, no bank accounts.  In 2010, before the famous Kushchevka [killings] took place, the company was excluded from the Federal Taxroll List of Registered Companies (ЕГРЮЛ), due to its inactivity….”

But how does Grib explain how Olga’s personal data got included in the registration packet for “Kuban Sugar”?

Very simple:  Lopatina is an actual businesswoman, and her actual business is is a LLC called “Arlain“, located in Vladivostok.  The “Arlain” Company is legitimate and sells home furnishings.  According to Grib, Lopatina is the single owner and CEO of “Arlain”.  Her personal data, which she used to register “Arlain”, was hacked, and used in the registration of “Kuban Sugar” without her knowledge or consent.  On 8 December Olga filed a request to the Chief of Police in Kushchevsky Region, complaining about her data being forged for the registration of the sugar company.  Again, according to Grib, Olga doesn’t even know Angela or Natalia; she is not acquainted with them nor with their husbands; she has never been in Kushchevka, and she never signed any documents regarding the “Kuban Sugar” company.

So, that’s Olga’s story.

If she is telling the truth, then somebody is trying to set her up, by connecting her with the Tsapok/Tsepovyaz bandits.  If she is lying, then …. well, I suppose this will all come out in court….  maybe…..

Director’s Notes, Or “Which One of Youse Fags is Guildenstern?”

Have youse good fellas ever heard the expression, “Kill the Messenger” ?

Aside from Olga’s libel lawsuit, Team Chaika’s response to Navalny’s charges is the oldie-but-goodie gambit of  “Kill the Messenger“.  Hence, for our Hamlet analogy, Navalny can be, say, Rosencrantz, with Guildenstern as, I dunno, maybe Bill Browder.  Sure, these guys were all childhood chums, and sure they’re all crooks now, but a certain line is crossed when a fella goes after another fella’s family.

Team Chaika points out several obvious facts, including

  1. Navalny himself has two criminal convictions, both involving large-scale embezzlement (the KirovLes and Yves Roche cases)
  2. Navalny’s brother Oleg is serving 3 years in a prison colony, for his Post Office corruption/embezzlement scheme.
  3. Navalny’s parents have been operating in legal limbo-land for many years, using their basket-wicket company as a front for moonshine-selling and various other illegal activities.
  4. Navalny’s “Anti-Corruption” fund is financed and sponsored by the likes of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, Bill Browder, and the American State Department.

In other words, Navalny himself ain’t no angel, although, to his credit, he has never been suspected of actually murdering anyone.  All of Navalny’s sins involve the greed for money rather than any lust for violence.

Act IV:  “It’s not WHAT you know, Horatio, it’s WHOM you know!”

“Don’t you DARE talk back to me, Young Skull!”

Dramatis Personae:
Misha Khodorkovsky joins our cast as the windbag and cad Trigorin, also doubling as The Skull of Yorick in Hamlet.

As Hamlet/Navalny himself admits:

“I knew him, Horatio.  He hath borne me on his back a thousand times, and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! My gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft.”

Although, in Navalny’s case, the part of Khodorkovsky which he has “kissed a thousand times” is no doubt some part of the anatomy other than lips.  Which is enough to rise anybody’s gorge.

So, in the actual Chekhov play:

In Act IV  our kreakl heroine, Nina, reveals that she was impregnated, then dumped, by her svengali, Trigorin.  Trigorin went back to his old mistress, Arkadina, Nina lost her baby in childbirth, and was forced to join a wandering band of summer-theater actors performing second-rate plays in third-rate towns.  Nina compares herself to the benighted seagull which Konstantin bagged in Act II.  Which is sort of unfair, since Konstantin never did anything to HER, other than carry a torch for her and be annoying in his clinginess.

After Nina’s sudden re-apperance Konstantin, a wannabe writer, decides finally to pull the pin on his useless life.  He tears up his own manuscripts, then shoots and kills himself (offstage), using the gun that was introduced in Act II.

Seagull: “If you kiss me, I will turn into a handsome Swan Prince – ACTING!”

 

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2 Responses to Navalny vs. The Seagull, Act IV

  1. PaulR says:

    I haven’t been following the Chaika case, so thanks for the summary. From what you have described, it is all evidence by association, rather than evidence of direct wrongdoing. Or is there something else?

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Dear Paul:
      I can’t claim to have done an exhaustive research, but it DOES seem like all or mostly “guilt by association”. The anti-Chaika sources all quote the same material, which is basically Navalny’s material. There isn’t anything in addition to that, as far as I know, so if you study all the Navalny materials carefully, then I believe that’s pretty much it for the Prosecution Case.
      The Defense case is also fairly thin: Just Lopatina’s libel lawsuit, and the more pro-Kremlin bloggers attacking Navalny for his own shady associations and past misdeeds.

      So, that’s pretty much it, as far as I can determine.
      Still, even if Chaika is as pure as a lamb, it does still seem to me that he should have done something about his rotten son. Like, publicly disowned him, or something, I dunno.
      Guilt by association is still a type of guilt, especially when it’s your close family.

      I just realized – Ha ha – maybe I should have used “King Lear” instead of “Hamlet” as my Shakespeare meme:
      Crusty and arrogant, but basically good King who just happened to spawn some rotten offspring!

      Like

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