rubles rublos
© Sputnik/ Ilya Pitalev
Some 12 billion rubles ($185 million) in cash has been reportedly seized from an FSB colonel facing charges of large scale corruption - overshadowing the notorious case of Colonel Zakharchenko and his record of 8.5 billion rubles.

The piles of cash - literally - were discovered at three apartments belonging to FSB Colonel Kirill Cherkalin and, allegedly, to his allies, Russian media reported on Friday, citing sources close to the investigation. Aside from cash, a whole collection of luxury wristwatches and other treasures were seized as well.

The funds were allegedly provided to the official and two of his accomplices by various banks and other businesses for "protection."

"We believe these funds have been received for a general 'patronage' from representatives of several commercial firms, first of all from directors of banks," a source told Rosbalt.

On Thursday, Colonel Cherkalin, who has served as the head of the FSB department on cyber security in the banking sphere, was charged with receiving a hefty bribe of $850 thousand (some 55 million rubles) from a commercial firm. Cherkalin and his two accomplices - both of them are retired FSB Colonels - were arrested earlier this year and remain in custody by court ruling.

If confirmed, the sum of 12 billion rubles will mark the largest-ever amount of cash, seized from a corrupt official in Russia. Prior to this, the dubious 'record' was held by police colonel, Dmitry Zakharchenko.

While holding a senior anti-corruption post, Zakharchenko managed to amass a whopping 8.5 billion rubles (some $ 131.5 million) in cash, allegedly extorting bribes from various businessmen. The hearings on the Zakharchenko case continue, earlier this week a prosecutor asked the court to sentence the former law enforcer to 15 and a half years behind bars.