Russia demands to extradite former official of Ministry of Culture detained in Austria

Russia demands to extradite former official of Ministry of Culture detained in Austria
Boris Mazo

This is about Boris Mazo suspected of embezzlement of more than 800 million rubles ($12.5 million).

Russia has demanded to extradite a former official of the Ministry of Culture Boris Mazo who had been detained in Austria. He is suspected of embezzlement of more than 800 million rubles ($12.5 million), reports Kommersant.

The Prosecutor-General’s Office has demanded to extradite a former director of the property management and investment policy department of the Ministry of Culture Mazo, so he is prohibited to leave Austria. The former official has been put on an international wanted list, but he has not been detained upon Russia’s request, but after a criminal case had been initiated in Spain.

However, the Vienna Provincial Court has already refused Spain to extradite Mazo. The investigation theory is that in 2015, a company tied to Mazo purchased a high-end villa in Marbella for 4 million euros that Mazo had received illegally in Russia. Austria ensured that the real estate had been bought in 2015, before Mazo was accused of embezzlement. Lawyers of the former official provided papers that proved the house had been bought for the family’s money - 2 million euros.

The Court arrested Mazo’s car worth of around 100 thousand euros, 160 thousand euros on bank accounts and in cash, as well as jewellery and some papers.

In the Russian Federation, Mazo is a defendant in a ‘case into renovators’. He was accused of waste of at least 450 million rubles ($7 million) allocated for renovation of St. Petersburg’s Hermitage Museum. The Court sentenced the ex-official to 1.5 years of imprisonment and 250 thousand rubles ($3 thousand) fine, but Mazo managed to escape to Spain until he was detained.

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