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18/4/2014 7:56
RIA Novosti

Russia

Berezovsky lawyers appeal latest Russian arrest warrant

18:30 10/08/2007
MOSCOW, August 10 (RIA Novosti) - Boris Berezovsky's lawyers have challenged the latest warrant issued by the Russian Prosecutor General's Office for his arrest, the fugitive tycoon's defense counsel said Friday.

"Today we have filed an appeal against the arrest warrant for Berezovsky on charges of alleged misappropriation of $13 million from SBS-Agro Bank," Andrei Borovkov said.

A Moscow district court issued Tuesday a sixth warrant "in absentia" for Berezovsky's arrest. Russia's repeated requests for the extradition of Berezovsky, who fled to the U.K. six years ago, have been refused by British authorities.

The latest arrest warrant follows charges that Berezovsky diverted $13 million from SBS-Agro Bank, once a leading Russian bank, and used the money to buy real estate on the Mediterranean coast. In July a Moscow court ordered the seizure of a luxury home allegedly owned by Berezovsky in France.

Explaining the ruling, the court said that if left at large, Berezovsky could continue his criminal activities, harass witnesses or conceal evidence.

The court said the tycoon fled to Britain in 2001 without intending to return.

Judges also dismissed arguments by court-appointed defense attorneys that procedural violations were made during the hearings. Berezovsky has refused to send any of his own defense lawyers to his ongoing trial-in-absentia in Moscow, which he has branded "a farce."

A member of Berezovsky's court-appointed defense team, Semyon Aria, said he expected numerous new charges against the tycoon in the near future based on probes launched by the Prosecutor General's Office, but said he could not specify the charges.

Eleven probes have so far been launched against Berezovksy - who now goes by the name Platon Elenin in the U.K. - and requests for his extradition have been repeatedly sent to London, where he has been granted political asylum and citizenship.

The first warrant for Berezovsky's arrest was issued in 1999 as part of the Aeroflot case. Prosecutors charged the billionaire with embezzling over 214 million rubles ($8.3 million) from the national air carrier and laundering more than 16 million rubles ($620,000). The charges carry up to 10 years in jail.

The outspoken ex-oligarch, once a media magnate with interests in aviation and car manufacturing, announced plans in April to overthrow President Vladimir Putin by force. Berezovsky faces charges of plotting a coup in Russia, for which he faces up to 20 years in prison.

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RIA NovostiBerezovsky lawyers appeal latest Russian arrest warrant

18:30 10/08/2007 Boris Berezovsky's lawyers have challenged the latest warrant issued by the Russian Prosecutor General's Office for his arrest, the fugitive tycoon's defense counsel said Friday. >>

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