Greece illegally transfers Aleksander Vinik’s equipment to US
Computers and phones of the arrested Russia were transferred to the US, despite the fact that it was legal only in case he would be extradited to the country.
Greece illegally transferred computers and phones that had been seized from the Russian Aleksander Vinnik after his arrest in summer, 2017, to the US. This is being confirmed by the documents of the Prosecution Service of Greece that were brought to RIA Novosti’s attention.
Aleksander Vinnik was arrested in Greece in July, 2017 upon the request of the U.S. American authorities accuse the Russian of laundering of from $4 to 9 billion through the cryptocurrencies exchange BTC-e. Greek court delivered its verdict as to Vinnik’a extradition to the US, Russia and France. In the US, he face up to 55 years behind bars. France accuses him of theft of personal data and extortion.
It comes from the letter of the prosecutor of the appeal court of Thessaloniki addressed to the prosecutor of the appeal court of Athens that after Vinnik’s arrest, the data storage media seized from him were sent to the U.S, and then returned to Greece. These actions are illegal, due to the fact that the conclusion of the Supreme criminal and civil court of Greece (Areopagus) implied that the equipment could only be transferred only in case the extradition of the Russian.
The letter dated September 19, 2018, is related to the request made by France. French authorities ask for the data from the Russian’s computers and phones. It is stated that copies of files of various data storage devices that were found during the suspect’s arrest, as well as the data storage devices themselves were given to the U.S. during the judicial assistance to the country’s authorities. Subsequently, upon the request of the Greek judges, they were returned and taken to the Prosecution Service for combating money laundering in Athens, due to the fact that they were connected to the current investigation. The prosecutor of Thessaloniki states the further implementation of the European order is now being given to the jurisdiction of the prosecutor of Athens: in terms of transferring data from Vinnik’s data storage devices to France.
The Russian’s defense had been demanding evidence from Greek authorities that the equipment had not been given to the US, however did not receive it. The lawyers’ theory is that American experts are capable of changing the information on Vinnik’s phones and computers.
The arrestee continues his hunger strike for more than 50 days he started on November 26, 2018, “as a mark of protest against the judicial outrage.” He has lost 17 kg during this period of time.
Vinnik believes he is a hostage of Greek authorities that are using him “as a token money” for their own political purposes. The minister of Justice of Greece is to conclude upon his extradition. In late January, his duration of remand in custody (18 months) is to be over. After that, he is supposed to be released.