Translated from Самый сок!
In Liberia, Sergey Chernyshev is almost a local celebrity. There is only one white Ukrainian driving the red “Hummer”. Three years ago he moved to this West African country and opened a casino.
- Ukraine did not want us to work there. I was in a desperate situation. I had lots and lots of equipment, which I could no longer use. After ten years spent in Ukraine I left with nothing. – says Sergey.
In Ukraine Chernyshev worked in the gambling industry. He had 424 venues [with gambling machines] across the country and 2500 employees. But when the government of Yulia Tymoshenko imposed a ban on gambling, he had to wrap up his business.
Chernyshev didn’t give up and started to look for the country where he could apply his knowledge, experience and equipment acquired during ten years at home. His choice fell on Liberia.
A civil war just recently ended in the country.
Liberia has lots of gold and diamonds hidden in its depths. But the country’s population is very poor and there are only two casinos in the whole state.
- Specifics of gambling business suggest that the poorer the country is, the more its people gamble, – explains the businessman. – They are more likely to rely on luck. And this is true. People here are as anywhere else.
Once Sergey arrives to the venue, he is immediately met by the guard who first opens the door of the car and then the door to the casino.
The Ukrainian is sure that this place is paradise for business. There are almost no regulatory bodies, no tax inspection. His contributions to the budget Sergey was personally discussing with the Liberian Deputy Minister of Finances. By the way, from Sergey’s words, the MPs of this country can be found sitting in their underpants on the steps of the department. It’s hot!
- When I came to the Deputy Minister of Finances, I began asking him smart questions: I should pay the taxes, right?
He: Of course, you should. I: How much to pay?
He said: Well, what do you mean how much? Pay seven percent from what you have earned. I said: OK. How will we count? Is there a cash register?
He just stared at me and said in a serious tone: You are going to write somewhere for yourself how much you earn, right? I said: Of course, I will.
Good. From that you will pay. That’s it! So, here I am writing and paying, – laughs the businessman.
When his gambling business got off, Sergey decided to try the gold mining. It took him about half year to get the license.
- I got the license in a very original way, – says Sergey. – I came and said that I wanted the license.
They told me to pay one hundred thousand dollars. I refused, said that I didn’t have such money and left.
Two months had passed, they came to me and said ‘OK, let it be 50 thousand. We”ll do it for you, because you are already one from ours.’ I said ‘Guys, two months ago I would pay 50 thousand, but now I’ll give only ten.
They: no, no, no … No way. For ten thousands we will not give you the license. That is unacceptable. I said: okay, I won’t insist, ‘no’ is also an answer.
To make the long story short. after six months I got the license for $ 500.
After that the Ukrainian concluded that in this country you can’t give anything in advance. Otherwise, there will be neither money, nor license. And most importantly there is nobody to whom you can complain.
It’s now that Sergey’s business is going well. But for the first six months it wasn’t easy. Showing us around Monrovia, he stops near the local prison where people sit in pits covered with bars.
The Ukrainian himself had the pleasure to spend here some time. Someone on behalf of his attorney issued the debt paper worth one and a half thousand dollars.
- I was dragged to court and demanded to pay fifteen hundred dollars. They showed me a paper which was allegedly signed on my behalf. They said that it was signed by my lawyer, although I didn’t have any lawyer, – says Sergey. – It happened only because I was newcomer, and they wanted to extort from me some money. So I got into this place, and my wife had to pay. Only after that I was released.
- I was shocked when we came here, – says Sergey’s wife, Lilia. – Mainly by the local standards of life. It struck me most. But gradually we got used to it.
Lilia lives in Liberia with her husband from the day one.
Lilia helps her husband with his business. In free time she is cooking. Sometimes even the dishes from Ukrainian cuisine. But this is problematic in Liberia. To make borscht, Lilia has to go to few different stores to find the right products.
- We buy seafood. Here are a lot of crabs, lobsters, shrimps. We buy baskets of them, – says the businessman’s wife.
- And still we sometimes want borscht. Lilia cooked it few times here. It’s delicious, yet not the same [as in Ukraine]. Simply. they don’t have our products. For example, no sour cream, – adds Sergey.
Lilia and Sergey live near the ocean. The terrace faces the beach. This pleasure costs them 18 thousand dollars per year.
Ocean, fruits, seafood – what else one needs? But Chernyshevs dream of a different life.
- People come here to make money and go to rest for a month or two in their home country or Europe or America, – says Lilia.
Their dream is to make money and return home.
Comments of Russian netizens
Svartalv: Thanks God we don’t have this garbage here now (well, almost none). Let the n**gers lose their bungalows to those gambling machines.слава Богу у нас этой херни теперь нет (ну почти нет). Пусть теперь негритосы в автоматы проигрывают свои квартиры (бунгало, хижины)
Dobrunia: They are banned only officially, but venues with machines are still here as in the past… Only the name has changed.Официально запретили, но залы с автоматами как стояли, так и стоят….Название только поменилось.
5тыщрублей: On one hand, he is a brave guy. Took money and went to savages. On the other hand, the country which just finished the war doesn’t need casinos in first place.не, с одной стороны канеш мужик смелый, взял все свое бабло и уехал к дикарям. с другой стороны, в стране, где вот-вот кончилась война, явно казино – не первостепенная нужда.
domart: He lived in Kirovohrad. By the way, he earned huge money in Ukraine, so let him not whine – for all the money he succeeded to get in Ukraine, he can buy all that land with all its residents.Кстати поднялся он на Украине немеряно, так что пусть не ноет, за те деньги что он поимел со своих казино в Украине можно купить всю ту страну с потрохами и неграми.
Rzhevsky: He will have to go long way to pay for all his sins in Ukraine .. for broken families, broken lives, for children who grow without fathers and other evil he was sowing here ..ему еще долго приёдется расплачиваться за свои грехи на украине.. за разбитые семьи, разбитые жизни, за детей которые теперь без отцов живут, и многое многое другое зло, которое он тут сеял..
Take Monaco where 90% of the revenue goes to people, and 10% – to the owner of casino – now this is great. And what did we have? The greed of owners crossed all boundaries ..вот в Монако – все красиво – 90% выигрыша людям, 10% – хозяину казино, а у нас что было? жадность хозяев побила все границы ..
Freedom2parrots: In my youth I worked in such venue as a security guard, they fuck up people’s lives. The addicts play not for Luck but for Thrill …Работал в молодости охранником в Игровых автоматах, они пиздец как портят людям жизнь и подсаженные игроки играют на ради Удачи а ради Игры…
One person lost his car, then apartment, his wife left him, he started dressing like homeless, stinking like a shit, though in the beginning was more like a man of more than average means. I myself saw him winning 100,000 rubles and squandering them right away, even though we tried to persuade him to leave and spend the money on himself, to which he said “If I don’t lose it to you, I will go and lose it somewhere else.”Один чел проиграл машину, потом квартиру, он него ушла жена, одевался как Унылое Говно и вонял как бомж, хотя в начале был более чем среднего достатка. При мне поднял больше 100 000 рублей и тут же их просадил, хотя мы его уговаривали уйти и потратить деньги на себя, на что он сказал ‘Не у вас проиграю, дак у конкурентов’.