Russian IT specialist brags on Twitter about avoiding taxes in Estonia. And gets fired

In July 2022, Yulia Kuznetsova, a Russian IT specialist and a citizen well-known in the Russian-speaking Vue-community, described on Twitter how she avoids taxes in Estonia. Her story gained publicity. Some time later the Estonian ex-president joined the discussion. And all ended with Yulia getting fired from her job in a day.

  • It all started with a series of tweets by Yulia about her life in Estonia, and how she lives there but pays taxes in Georgia, because of the much lower rates. So far, Yulia privated her Twitter account, but there are many screenshots left.
  • Explaining the decision to register as an individual entrepreneur in Georgia, she referred to the “Russophobic embassy” in Estonia. She also wrote that she does not want her taxes to be spent on Ukrainian refugees:
Russian IT specialist reasons why she avoids taxes in Estonia
Screenshots from Twitter account @bookazoid_
  • Twitter users quickly tagged The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia, the police, as well as local activists. The former president of the country, Toomas Hendrik Ilves, also paid attention to the thread. He wrote that Estonians are proud to pay taxes and believe that everyone who lives in Estonia and uses its freedoms, benefits, and public services should do the same.
  • Yulia responed to Toomas that “some troll pretends to be the ex-president of Estonia and will allegedly investigate my taxes. How many brain cells you need to believe that?” She did not pay attention to the fact that his Twitter account was verified. The users confirmed that president is real. Toomas himself cited the proverb that “when stuck in a hole, you should stop digging.”
  • Yulia got deanonymized very quickly (it was not difficult, because she is known in the Vue community), her Telegram channel was discovered and later flooded with messages. At some point, her Telegram page looked like this:
  • Nonetheless, Yulia considered herself a victim and complained that she was being bullied:
  • And finally, on August 3, 2022, she wrote that she got fired:
  • And the other day, the Russian publication published an article that told the story from Yulia’s pespective. The article claimed Yulia was a victim in this situation, a pregnant girl who was unfairly bullied online and deprived of her job. “I got the impression that I was being bullied just because I am Russian,” she writes.

The editors of AIN.Capital hope that the more such stories become public, the easier it will be for European countries to introduce a general visa ban for Russians. By the way, here is a thread from the ex-president of Estonia, inspired by this and similar stories, about why a visa is not a right, but a privilege.