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Sister of corrupt banker sentenced in multi-million dollar bribery scam

  • Woman sentenced for laundering the proceeds of a multi-million dollar bribery scheme
  • She received $3.542 million on behalf of her brother, Andrey Ryjenko, into bank accounts that she operated in Jersey and Guernsey
  • The money she received represented Ryjenko’s reward for showing favour to a US-based consultancy owner

Today (25 September 2018) Tatjana Sanderson, 38 of Sussex Gardens, London has been sentenced to two years suspended for two years at the Old Bailey for laundering the proceeds of a multi-million dollar bribery scheme following an investigation by the City of London Police’s Overseas Anti-Corruption Unit (OACU) and the Philadelphia office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

 

Sanderson knowingly received $3.542 million on behalf of her brother, Andrey Ryjenko, into bank accounts that she operated in Jersey and Guernsey.

 

At the time, Ryjenko was a senior banker employed by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). In his role, Ryjenko was the operation leader for bank projects in which clients sought investment or loans. Several of those clients were represented by a US based consultancy firm that was run by Dmitrij Harder.

The catalyst for the fraud is believed to have come in September 2007 when Harder informed Ryjenko that his company had been retained by a Russian based oil company to obtain financial backing for a project. Ryjenko identified this as an opportunity to make money fraudulently; his employer’s potential clients would be directed to instruct Harder’s company - Ryjenko and Harder could then share the consultancy fee.

Over the following two years and five months, Harder’s company received commission payments totalling $7.92 million. Harder gave $3.542 million of this to Ryjenko who arranged for it to be transferred to the offshore accounts of Sanderson. It is believed the money was transferred to Sanderson’s accounts to disguise Ryjenko’s involvement in the crimes. The money received by Sanderson represented Ryjenko’s reward for showing favour to Harder.

When the banks became suspicious and questioned Sanderson about the amount of money she was receiving, she claimed that the money was earned from a consultancy job with Harder’s company.

The matter was referred to OACU by EBRD’s Chief Compliance Officer in February 2010. On 26 February 2010, OACU officers executed search warrants at two addresses. During the search, items were seized as evidence including computers and banking documents. Ryjenko was arrested on the same day and sentenced to six years on 19 June 2018. Sanderson was arrested on 13 April 2011 and was then bailed to attend an interview.

Following an investigation by the Philadelphia office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Harder, of Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty in the United States to two counts of violating the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). In July 2017 he was sentenced to five years imprisonment and ordered to forfeit $1.9 million.

Upon sentencing, the investigating officers on the case were commended by the judge for bringing to court a complex investigation and co-ordinating extensive telephone evidence.

Detective Constable Roger Dainty of the City of London Police’s Economic Crime Directorate said:

“The sentencing of Sanderson marks the successful conclusion of eight years work by officers from the Overseas Anti-Corruption Unit.

“Greed drove this team of fraudsters to take advantage of the companies they worked for. Our complex investigation and work with international law enforcement was able to put a stop to their crimes.”


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