Investigation requests info on Bashneft ex-CEO’s foreign accounts

Investigation requests info on Bashneft ex-CEO’s foreign accounts
Ural Rakhimov, Bashneft ex-CEO

The investigation period regarding Ural Rakhimov, who is presently in Austria, has been prolonged until a response from abroad is received.

The investigation sent inquiries to foreign banks requesting information on accounts and deposits belonging to Bashneft ex-CEO Ural Rakhimov. As reported by TASS with reference to his lawyer Sergey Makarenko, the Investigative Committee is using this as a pretext to extend the investigation period. According to him, the trial has become indefinite, so "no one can be sure as to how long this is going to take."

We should remind you that Ural Rakhimov is accused of embezzlement and legalization of shares in enterprises belonging to Bashkortostan’s fuel and energy complex totaling over 130 billion rubles ($2,2b). According to the investigation, the Bashneft ex-CEO had been taking advantage of the high status of his father Murtaza Rakhimov, who had been Bashkortostan’s first president. Then he carried out financial transactions with the property he had stolen: namely, he sold the shares to Sistema JSFC and other legal entities for a total of more than $2.5 billion.

The deadline for one of the four incidents of the criminal case expired in December 2016, but the investigation refused to stop the proceedings.

Earlier, the Investigative Committee charged Sistema co-owner Vladimir Yevtushenkov with legalization of property obtained by criminal means, in particular: the theft of shares in enterprises belonging to Bashkortostan’s fuel and energy complex that also involved Ural Rakhimov. However, the charges against Yevtushenkov were dropped and the criminal prosecution was terminated.

As for Ural Rakhimov, at present he is living in Austria. Previously, the court of Vienna had refused to extradite him to Russia. Meanwhile, the lawyers insist that their client is not hiding from the investigation and is ready to testify.

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