How Tetyana Klinchenko (Тетяна Клинченко) made a mockery of her professed Christianity and stole $1,500 from us
The brief story of how Tanya ripped us off:
I sent Tanya Klinchenko, professor of Christian Ethics at Kyiv Mogilyanska Academy, this strong accusation: “You betrayed what I supposed was a friendship, you stole our money, you insulted my wife, you tried out a vast number of lies to justify your theft before choosing the two that seem hardest to disprove, and your loud, hypocritical invocations of scripture give the church that I love a bad odor.”
She answered telling me where to find my mail. She was not just “turning the other cheek.” She ignored my accusations. They are true.
Tanya was pleasant to me during the four years I rented an apartment from her, paying the rent early for her convenience, writing letters of recommendation for her son, and overlooking the worn-out furniture, carpets and appliances. In one brief moment, when I asked her to return our rental deposit as I left, she turned vicious. She made accusation after accusation about things we had done to the apartment and refused to consider giving us any of the $1,500 back. Her claims are false. Eventually she settled on the accusation that this Brezhnev-era divan pictured here, one arm of which had broken off and was there to be reattached, was worth $1,000 and three chairs like those shown here, which had broken piece by piece during our four years there, were worth $500, for a total of $1,500. She had previously given me permission to throw all of them away.
The full story with complete photographs and copies of the emails we have exchanged, appears below.
Since Tanya often bragged about how she teaches Christian Ethics at Kyiv Mogilya Academy, I repeatedly asked her to propose an ethical, Christian process to resolve our differences. She totally, repeatedly ignored the request. I sent it via people who know her and also heard nothing.
Ukrainians and Americans alike shrug and ignore such thefts. Ukraine is like that. It is clever (хитрый) to take money from foreigners. Ukrainians think it is not their business. They do not want to offend an acquaintance like Tanya. I believe it is their business. When a loud self-professed Christian like Tanya will not answer accusations like mine, it embarasses other believers. When a Ukrainian refuses to answer to a charge of theft, it casts a bad light on all Ukrainians. When that person teaches Christian Ethics at the country’s leading Christian University, it calls the entire society into question.
Here’s the full story, about how in covering her theft Tanya assembled a rich assortment of lies, then threw both insults and scripture at me and my wife to give credence to the lies. She managed to break four of the Ten Commandments: 3, 8, 9 and 10.
We rented an apartment from Tanya Klinchenko at Pushkinskaya 2/4-7, Apartment 103 (Пушкинская 2-4/7, кв. 103.) I made a mistake. I paid my rent for May, 2012 on April 25, early as almost always, even though we were in negotiation for a new house. She had known for six months that we were looking for a new place. I told Tanya as we paid that we might soon be moving. I followed up with an email on May 3 to tell her we were completing a contract.
My wife Oksana told me not to give her the rent since we were thinking of moving. I told her that I trusted Tanya – she is a professor, an ardent Christian, and we had known her for four years. Oksana turned out to be spectacularly right.
We signed the lease for the new apartment on May 7. I stepped outside the room where we were signing and I telephoned Tanya to say we would be moving, as early as June 1. I would like to agree on a date and arrange to get our deposit back.
Tanya attacked me viciously the moment I mentioned getting our deposit back. She went into a rant about how horribly we had damaged the walls of the apartment. She would not talk about dates whatsoever. I could not interrupt; she would not let me politely hang up. She did the same to Oksana. The line was thankfully dead when I got it. Tanya said that we had rudely hung up on her. No – she did rudely refused to let us end the conversation. Tanya had made up her mind that she was not going to return any money to us. Her only concern was coming up with an appropriate lie to justify her action. She tried several lies. The claim she put into writing has noting to do with the walls at all.
Here is a list of the lies she made in claiming the month’s rent she held as a security deposit:
· We put holes in the walls (no – look at the photos).
· We stole the vacuum cleaner (no, the old one broke and we replaced it on our own).
· We broke the refrigerator (no, it is almost 20 years old but still worked fine when we moved out).
· We often had guests over (the lease says nothing, and everybody invites friends over)
· We once had 40 guests in the apartment (absolutely untrue, how would she know, and so what?)
· Oksana, my wife, is not on the lease (so what? She knew Oksana moved in in 2009)
· We broke the furniture. This is the biggest lie. The Soviet-era furniture had been fixed many times before. When it started breaking again when I moved in in 2008, she gave me permission to throw it out. That’s what I did. Now she claims it was worth $1,500. You can see the furniture in my photos.
· We ruined her mattress. No – the Soviet-era mattress, with the protector to prevent damage when her 80-year-old mother urinated at night, is as good as it was when we moved in. You can see it in the photos.
· We broke the washing machine (no, it worked when we left, and keeping it working is the landlord’s job in any case)
· We put a black mark on one of her pictures (no, we did not. She took the picture away more than a year ago, and we did not want her pictures on the wall in the first place).
I signed the lease for the apartment in March of 2008. Tanya always seemed to be short of money. As the rental receipts attached to the lease show, I often gave her the rent in advance, sometimes more than a week early, when she had a special need. I also helped her in other ways, such as writing a letter of recommendation for her son Sergei to study in the US. We put up with broken furniture, torn carpets and appliances that did not work very well. I mistakenly assumed she would be grateful.
Here are photos of the apartment as I moved in. Neither Tanya her mother Yana, the real owner, had modernized the apartment since soviet times. Everything was ancient, worn out but still working.
Here are photos of each room in the apartment as we moved out: the living room, bedroom, hall, guest room, toilet, bath and kitchen. I wrote descriptions in each album. Among other things, we fixed the cheap cabinet in the kitchen when it broke and we kept Tanya’s philodendron watered and alive for four years. Even through the mess the workmen made as these photos were taken, you can see that everything is just about as it had been four years earlier.
She insulted us in order to reinforce her lies. She wrote that “Lady” broke everything she looked at. Calling Oksana “Lady” is like calling her a prostitute. Oksana is my wife. Tanya had no way of knowing who sat on the chairs when they collapsed, one by one, over four years. They had broken before, they broke again, and they were not worth fixing. Here is a link to supporting email.
The total rent we paid was $77,000, not including the $1,500 deposit which Tanya has kept. She paid about $200 for a new stove, $200 for a new washer, and periodic payments to repairmen. I conclude that she cleared about $77,500 from the arrangement. That is much more than most Ukrainians make over four years. The apartment is worth over $300,000 even in today’s market. She cannot ask for sympathy because she is poor. She did not pay any taxes on the income – she made sure that the tax authorities never learned about the rent I paid her.
Tanya is a professor of Christian Ethics at Kyiv Mogilyanska University, the oldest Christian university in the country, and one of the most prestigeous. I wrote her three times to ask her to propose an ethical, Christian resolution to our problem. She did not reply.
This article is written so that it will show up in Google searches for all who care to see that Tanya is a false Christian. I hope her associates from Kyiv Mohyla Academy (Києво-Могилянська Академія) and her church chance to read it as well. Many people harbor the suspicion that a person who proclaims her religion as loudly as Tanya has something to hide. In her case that is indeed true. She is, putting it quite plainly, a thief, liar, and hypocrite.