Russia police: $3M Bolshoi embezzlement inquiry

AP News
Posted: Jun 13, 2013 8:41 AM

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian police have launched a criminal investigation into the embezzlement of 90 million rubles (about $3 million) of state funds during the refurbishment of Moscow's legendary Bolshoi Theater.

Interior Ministry officials said Thursday a contractor, PO Teplotekhnik, received the money for work on the theater's electrical system despite not fulfilling its contract, Russian news agencies reported. The company couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

A symbol of national pride for centuries, the Bolshoi reopened in 2011 after a $1 billion renovation. Despite the lavish sums, much of the work was of poor quality, with cracks appearing in the walls and gold leaf crumbling away.

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The theater has been shrouded in scandal since an assailant threw acid into the face of artistic director Sergei Filin in January.