Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin paid propagandists hundreds of millions of budget money, according to an FBK investigation published on Tuesday, March 7. Money for propaganda went through the program "My District", which in the investigation is called the "black box office" of Sobyanin and the metropolitan branch of "United Russia".
As FBK found out, in 2021 alone, 13.8 billion rubles were allocated from the budget for My District. Investigators studied 100,000 banking transactions of the program over three years and found out that the Moscow City Hall pays for information services to RT editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan and her husband Tigran Keosayan , who regularly talk in their programs about events in Moscow, such as the opening of new schools or museums. Funds are transferred to the accounts of companies controlled by them, as well as relatives. So, one of them, the White Lion studio, received 185 million in this way. Keosayan received another 61 million as the host and screenwriter of the Filmed program. In total, according to FBK estimates, the family received 440 million rubles from the mayor's office.
Among those who receive money from the mayor's office for information support are also Lifenews , the Super website, the Mash Telegram channel, the Tsargrad TV channel, journalist Ksenia Sobchak and the former editor-in-chief of Ekho Moskvy Alexei Venediktov . As the FBK found out, the company owned by Venediktov received 680.5 million rubles for a special project of the Diletant magazine called My District.
In addition, according to the investigation, in 2019-2021, the RTVI TV channel received 840 million rubles through the My District program.