Prosecutor's office tries and fails to challenge Russian mafia acquittal in Spain

Prosecutor's office tries and fails to challenge Russian mafia acquittal in Spain
Gennady Petrov

17 people were acquitted, including State Duma Deputy Vladislav Reznik and his wife Diana Gindin.

The prosecutor's office was unable to challenge the verdict of the National Court of Spain in the case of the “Russian Mafia” with 17 people acquitted, including State Duma Deputy Vladislav Reznik and his spouse Diana Gindin, RIA Novosti reports citing lawyer Alexander Gofshtein.

According to Gofshtein, under the Spanish law, the prosecutor’s right to appeal the sentence is not unconditional. “She can make a complaint, but it’s the prosecutor of the Supreme Court that gets to decide whether to file it with the Supreme Court of Spain. Upon examining the complaint, he considered that it was unreasonable and untenable and should not be subject to review by the Supreme Court,” the lawyer explained.

The case of the Russians will be returned to the first-instance court that issued the acquittal. According to Gofshtein, the court can only rule that the sentence enters into force.

 “Our compatriots must be congratulated,” said the lawyer.

The hearings on the "Russian mafia" case were held in the National Court of Spain in February-April 2018. The investigation took 11 years. 17 of the 27 accused were in the dock, they were mostly Russian citizens. The rest, including the leaders of the Tambovsko-Malyshevskaya crime group, Gennady Petrov and Alexander Malyshev, left Spain and never returned. The prosecutor's office believes that the organized criminal group was engaged in the laundering of money obtained by criminal means, through shell real-estate companies in Spain.

According to the prosecutor's office, Petrov, Malyshev, and their associates created a number of firms in the country and registered real estate in them in the 1990s. The investigation believes that the money was transferred to the accounts of those companies from Russia and other countries, and the companies were resold. The suspicious real estate transactions were carried out in Alicante, Malaga, Madrid and Mallorca, and the laundered money was transferred to offshore companies and other countries, the prosecution said. In 2008, Troika Operation was carried out in Spain to detain 20 people, most of whom were citizens of Russia.

The prosecutor's office demanded that Vladislav Reznik be sentenced to five years in prison and a fine of 30 million euros, and his spouse to 4,5 years in prison and a fine of 5 million euros. The couple’s lawyers stated at the hearing that the investigation had found no evidence that would have justified a custodial sentence. The court did not find any proof that the suspects were linked to the Tambovsko-Malyshevskaya or other groups involved in money laundering.

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