Zhirinovsky’s former daughter-in-law Nadezhda Grishaeva tried to remove the investigation into money laundering of the late LDPR leader in Europe from the Internet
Russian basketball player Nadezhda Grishaeva, who was married to the son of the late head of the LDPR, Igor Lebedev, has been seeking to remove the “Project” investigation about the family and entourage of Vladimir Zhirinovsky from various Internet platforms since 2022.
Grishaeva made such a request to the international association of journalists OCCRP and the “Project” itself. Later, unknown people began to seek the removal of the investigation from Google search results. In addition, publications in which Grishaeva appears have disappeared from other sites, including the site of the Baza publication.
In December 2022, Grishaeva personally contacted OCCRP and the Project, offering, in exchange for removing her name from the article, “to share information or make a donation to a charitable foundation,” explaining that “her role was nominal and in her place could be any other woman." And in January 2023, unknown persons offered financial support to the database of Russian officials rupep.org in exchange for deleting Grishaeva’s page (it also cited the Project’s investigation), the creators of the database told the Agency. All projects refused to delete the information.
- In July 2023, attempts to remove publications continued: Google received 14 requests in just two days (July 18–19) to remove from search results the English-language version of the “Project” investigation about the Zhirinovsky family, published on the OCCRP website. This is evidenced by data from the Lumen service, which aggregates complaints about online platforms. The complainants insisted that they were the authors of the Project article and that the publication on the OCCRP website violated their copyright.
- Apparently, the complainants sought to exclude the publication on the OCCRP website from search results, since the English version of the investigation published here appears higher in Google search results than the material on the Project website. The complainants had different first and last names, but the messages they sent were almost identical. One of these users used the same method to seek the removal of articles about Zhirinovsky’s daughter-in-law from the search results and on the website rupep.org. Google appears to have rejected all complaints: as of September 22, the texts are still found through the search engine.
- Other attempts to remove information about Zhirinovsky’s family have been more successful. Thus, the publication Baza deleted the investigation into the real estate of Lebedev and Grishaeva, the Agency noted. Baza did this after a pre-trial claim, Baza co-founder Anatoly Suleymanov told the Agency. Only the archived version of the investigation is currently available. Suleymanov could not remember on whose behalf and when the claim was sent, specifying only that it happened one and a half to two years ago. In the Baza telegram channel, archival publications about the real estate of Lebedev and Grishaeva are still available. Some other publications also disappeared: for example, from mid-August 2023, publications about Grishaeva were removed from the websites of Zurich Weekly News Review (an archived version of the page was preserved; in the publication, the site also refers to the investigation of the “Project”) and MoscowPost (the description of the page was preserved in the Google cache )
Zhirinovsky himself (before his death) and his son Igor Lebedev came under EU sanctions, but Zhirinovsky’s wife Galina Lebedeva and Igor Lebedev’s second wife Nadezhda Grishaeva (according to Baza, Grishaeva and Lebedev registered their marriage in 2016 and divorced in 2019, a month later after the publication of investigations about the basketball player.
Baza considered this divorce to be fictitious) sanctions do not apply. It was the wives who were registered with luxury real estate and hotels in Spain, as discussed in the investigations of “Project” and Baza, published in February-March 2019. And this property could have been purchased precisely from the illegal earnings of the Zhirinovsky family in the LDPR.
Grishaeva did not answer the Project’s questions at the time of publication.