Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

FBI Raiding Cleveland Properties Owned by Ukrainian Oligarchs

Posted By on Tue, Aug 4, 2020 at 10:23 AM

click to enlarge Three of the Optima Ventures current and former properties: Crowne Plaza Hotel, AECOM Building, One Cleveland Center - "IMG_2485"BY JEFFPYLE IS LICENSED UNDER CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
  • "IMG_2485"by jeffpyle is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
  • Three of the Optima Ventures current and former properties: Crowne Plaza Hotel, AECOM Building, One Cleveland Center
The FBI is currently raiding the offices of Optima Management Group, a Cleveland and Miami-based real estate company under the direction of Ukrainian oligarchs.

The local FBI office would provide no comment on their investigation and activities, but confirmed that agents had been seen carrying out a search warrant at One Cleveland Center, which Optima owns and operates out of, Tuesday morning.



Agents are also executing warrants in Miami. And while the FBI would not explicitly confirm that the searches were related to the so-called "Optima Schemes" — the information is currently under seal — Miami was the home base of the oligarchs' men in the United States: Mordechai "Motti" Korf, his brother-in-law Chaim Schochet, and Uriel Laber. These three men managed the "Optima" companies and U.S. assets, which were ultimately controlled by Ukrainian oligarchs Igor Kolomoisky and Gennadiy Bogolyubov.

Schochet was the man in Cleveland. In 2019, he told Scene that allegations in a lawsuit which described in detail the fraudulent means by which the oligarchs became the largest owners of downtown real estate in Cleveland, were "false, defamatory and utterly without merit."

You can read Scene's full report on how Ukrainian Oligarchs amassed their Cleveland real estate portfolio here.

***
Sign up for Scene's weekly newsletters to get the latest on Cleveland news, things to do and places to eat delivered right to your inbox.

Tags: , , , , , ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 9, 2020

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Calendar

© 2020 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 241-7550
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation