Alexander Vinnik charged with laundering of billions in US seeks asylum in Greece
An Athens court had previously decided to extradite the Russian citizen to the United States.
Russian Alexander Vinnik, accused of laundering $4 billion through cryptocurrency exchange in the US, has petitioned for political asylum to the Greek authorities. This is reported by RIA Novosti citing Vinnik’s lawyer Ilias Spirliadis.
“Vinnik has filed a petition for political asylum to avoid extradition to the United States. He believes his case is politically motivated,” the agency cites the lawyer.
Earlier, the Supreme Court of Greece had decided to extradite the accused to the United States. Vinnik, in turn, asked to send him to Russia, since he is a citizen of the Russian Federation and must be tried in his homeland. At the same time, the head of the cryptocurrency exchange denied all accusations of the American authorities.
The final decision should be made by the Greek Minister of Justice, who may not take into account the previous decisions of the courts.
As previously reported by the CrimeRussia, Vinnik was detained in Greece during a holiday with his family in July last year. According to the American law enforcement agencies, Vinnik had hacked Mt. Gox and transferred all funds to the BTC-e exchange; the exchange administration stressed that Vinnik was not involved in the platform management.
After the detention of Vinnik, the Russian Prosecutor General's Office also sent a request for his extradition, since a criminal case of 667-thousand-ruble ($11,759) swindling is being investigated against him in Russia.
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