The mail box of Gabriel Temin and his two companies, Luminor and Siberica, in Vantaa on 15 September 2023. STT has identified the two companies as ones that are suspected of exporting sanctioned goods, including thousands of drones, to Russia. (Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva)

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FINNISH CUSTOMS has provided an update on a pre-trial investigation into the export of sanctioned products from Finland to Russia.

The two Finnish companies at the heart of the investigation are believed to have exported 3,500 unmanned aerial vehicles with a total value of more than two million euros, and electronics such as microcontrollers and semiconductor components with a total value of over 600,000 euros.

Customs officials have also looked into the transport of anti-drone technology with a total value of over 350,000 euros through Russia to Kazakhstan. The transit of technology would have required a licence to export defence materiel, but the exporter had not applied for the licence.

Finnish Customs suspects that one of the two companies has been tasked with acquiring sanctioned goods and the other with forwarding the goods to Russia.

“Based on the pre-trial investigation, there are indications that the operation was led from Russia. A broad network of international companies was set up for the operation to enable the funding of the operation from, for example, Russia,” revealed Hannu Sinkkonen, the head of enforcement at Finnish Customs.

Sinkkonen on Tuesday told STT that the case involves classified information and declined to specify the type of the drones that are believed to have ended up in Russia. Customs officials also cannot tell whether the drones were used to prosecute the war of aggression in Ukraine.

Six people are suspected of regulation offences and defence materiel export offences in connection with the pre-trial investigation. One of them has been in pre-trial detention since September. The case is to be submitted to a prosecutor for consideration of charges in the near future.

The Finnish news agency earlier this autumn identified the two companies as Luminor and Siberica, also revealing that the companies have the same managing director, Gabriel Temin.

The European Union has imposed a range of sanctions, including export restrictions, to Russia over Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT

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