May 16 (UPI) -- Financial violations in Russia's government roughly doubled last year -- with the defense and space industries racking up the majority of the misused funds, the country's audit chamber said.
A report by a Russian regulator said the cost of the violations increased from $15 billion in 2016 to more than $30 billion in 2017.
The report found nearly 6,500 violations and irregularities related to the "allocation and use of Russian budget system funds" -- up from 3,800 the year before.
The most large-scale violations were related to the Russian space industry, where 151 cost $12 billion.
The offenses related mostly to activities involving the federal space agency and state corporation Roscosmos, which Russian President Vladimir Putin abolished in late 2015. The audit said several occurred during the agency's liquidation procedure.
The audit found Russia's defense industry racked up nearly $9 billion in violations.
The spike in violations may have also been caused by greater auditing and economic and geopolitical "uncertainty," Natalya Akindinova, a director at the Higher School of Economics Center for Development, told RBC.