Aleksander Kwaśniewski, former President of Poland, was paid a million euro by the company which is reported to be under investigation by Ukrainian prosecutors.
The current US President Donald Trump is facing potential impeachment proceedings for his alleged attempts to pressure Ukraine into an investigation that would adversely affect the Biden family. But the Investigation into Hunter Biden’s (son of US Presidential candidate and former VP Joe Bide)n Ukraine Company began prior to Trump’s call with President Zelensky and before he was even elected.
The name of Aleksander Kwasniewski, who was Polish President (1995-2005) appears in that investigation, as he is reported to have pocketed a million euro in fees from that Ukrainian enterprise. The company in question is Burisma Holdings, a gas company which employed Joe Biden’s son Hunter.
President Trump wants an investigation into whether Joe Biden attempted to pressure the Ukrainian authorities into dismissing the chief public prosecutor Viktor Shokin after he began an investigation into the company which was employing Hunter Biden.
According to reports in independent Russian media, the company in question is already being investigated for money laundering by Ukrainian oligarchs connected to former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. “Novaya Gazeta” in early October published materials on the investigation into one of the oligarchs, Sergey Kurchenko, which conclude that money which had been generated from illegal activities was laundered through the company and found its way into the private accounts of both Hunter Biden and Aleksander Kwaśniewski.
“Novaya Gazeta” reports that Burisma Holdings paid 3.4 million USD to a company representing Hunter Biden, and a million Euro to Aleksander Kwaśniewski as consultancy fees. Burisma was owned by Mikolyi Zlochevsky who was appointed environment minister by President Yanukovych. That ministry is responsible for granting licenses for gas and oil exploration. The company owned by the oligarch come minister soon became the second biggest such company on the Ukrainian market. After the Maidan revolution in 2014, Mr Zlochevsky offered Mr Kwaśniewski and Hunter Biden seats on the Board of his company. This helped the company to survive in the radically changed business climate.
Aleksander Kwaśniewski has acknowledged that he has been on the Board of the company in question since January 2014. His tasks include writing political forecasts and analysis. He assured journalists questioning him that he pays taxes on his income from Ukraine in Poland.
Mr Kwaśniewski, like Hunter Biden, has sat on the Board of a company of a prominent Ukrainian oligarch. They were useful to that company in a new political climate.
The investigation which the Ukrainians are in the middle of, will no doubt touch on where the company’s income was derived from, and what were the activities of its prominent Board members. It may also uncover whether there was any pressure from the US administration on the investigation of the Burisma company.
Oligarchs from countries of the former Soviet bloc often use former senior officials from the western world to add credibility and gravitas to their activities. The most famous of these is former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and his membership of the Gazprom Board.
As we see from this report he is not the only one. Retired politicians are cashing in on their name recognition and traction. Nothing new under the sun.
But the spotlight on Burisma is brighter than on other such cases because the son of a sitting US VP became involved, and allegations are flying around that his father tried to help him. Now a sitting President is pressing the Ukrainians to investigate the matter.
This means that we are going to learn much more about the business dealings of this company than maybe its Board members or owner might have wished. Those who live by their fame and their connections can sometimes perish from them.