Russian businessman-cum-informant Perepilichny’s death might have been murder, France says resuming probe amid Skripal scandal
The investigation suggests that the entrepreneur could have been poisoned while he was in Paris a day before his death.
The French prosecutor's office resumed the investigation into the death of businessman Alexander Perepilichny and now says premeditated murder is a likely theory, reported the Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail citing its sources.
The investigation was reportedly resumed after the Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned. According to the investigation, Perepilichny could have been poisoned during his four-day trip to Paris a day before his death.
Alexander Perepilichny had been an informant of the Hermitage Capital fund run by Bill Browder. Based on the information of the fund, the Swiss prosecutor's office initiated a case on laundering of the money siphoned off from the budget of the Russian Federation, as well as tax fraud of Russian officials. Perepilichny had also been one of the key witnesses in the case of Sergei Magnitsky, the lawyer who died in jail in November 2009. Rosbalt quoted anonymous sources claiming the entrepreneur had cooperated with Russian special services.
Perepilichny died in November 2012 in the British county of Surrey. In 2013, the police concluded that the businessman died of a heart attack while jogging, based on findings of an examination. In 2014, while analyzing the contents of his stomach, Monique S. J. Simmonds of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew discovered traces of poison of vegetable origin in Perepilichny’s body.
The cadets have been found guilty of an Attempt at Murder by a Group of Persons by Previous Concert and for Mercenary Reasons (part 3 of Art. 30, part 2 of Art. 105 of the Russian Criminal Code). They do not plead guilty.