Lawyers of Serezha-Bentley claim he is victim of frame
According to the defense, Sergey Asatryan did not extort money, but tried to return $ 1.2 million stolen from his uncle.
The defense of Sergey Asatryan and his uncle Arthur Baghdasaryan filed a petition in the name of the Moscow MIA Main Directorate investigator to terminate the criminal case of extortion in connection with the absence of the event of a crime in the actions of the defendants. According to Kommersant, the reason for this petition was the statement of the detainees on suspicion of extortion Sergey Asatryan, who got the nickname Serezha-Bentley in the criminal world for his love of expensive foreign cars, and his uncle, Arthur Baghdasaryan, submitted to the Main Investigative Directorate a year ago. According to them, they did not extort money from the victim Karen Mkhitaryan, but only asked him to return to them $ 1.2 million which he received from them rascally.
According to Artur Baghdasaryan’s lawyer Karen Nersisyan, in the summer of 2015 Mkhitaryan borrowed a large sum from his business partners and was getting death threats from them. According to legal counsel, in order to repay a debt, Karen Mkhitaryan allegedly took from Artur Baghdasaryan’s bank cell $ 1.2 million. As explained by the lawyer, Karen Mkhitaryan has gained access to the cell via forged personal power of attorney from the owner. After Karen Mkhitaryan refused to return the stolen money, the wife of Arthur Baghdasaryan reached out to Serezha-Bentley. The nephew took the side of his uncle and demanded Karen Mkhitaryan to return the stolen funds. However, Karen Mkhitaryan went to the police, saying that he became a victim of extortion.
The petition for termination of the criminal case was filed by Artur Baghdasaryan’s and Sergey Asatryan’s defense team immediately after familiarization with the case materials. It is to be recalled that the investigation of the case of the kingpin Serezha-Bentley and Arthur Baghdasaryan was completed on October 16, 2016. They were charged under Art. 163 of the Russian Criminal Code (Extortion). According to the investigators, the defendants in the autumn of 2015, guided by selfish motives, extorted from a businessman friend Karen Mkhitaryan $ 1.2 million. At the same time, as noted in the case materials, Serezha-Bentley threatened the entrepreneur, and later by his order Mkhitaryan’s country house was burnt.
As Kommersant noted, in 2010, Serezha-Bentley was already prosecuted for illegal possession of weapons and drugs, and was later arrested for beating a prisoner in the colony, because he denigrated the honor of their family clan. Sergey Asatryan is the son of the mafia boss Eduard Asatryan a.k.a. Osetrina (Sturgeon).
In a conversation with Kommersant, Serezha-Bentley’s lawyer, Viacheslav Zhukovsky, expressed the hope that Karen Mkhitaryan will be prosecuted. However, his colleague, the Baghdasaryan’s defender, believes that the decision of the investigation, which accused his client not in the arbitrariness but extortion, was influenced by Mkhitaryan’s bribery.