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Court extends arrest of suspected armed mutiny mastermind

October 19, 2011, 15:23 UTC+3

Kvachkov was the key suspect in the case over the assassination attempt on the life of chief of RAO UES electric utility Chubais on March 17, 2005

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MOSCOW, October 19 (Itar-Tass) — Moscow's Lefortovo court on Wednesday extended, to December 23, the arrest of retired Main Intelligence Department Colonel Vladimir Kvachkov, accused of attempted armed mutiny, a lawyer said.

"According to the judge's decision made on Wednesday, the term of arrest for my client has been extended to December 23," Kvachkov's lawyer Alexei Pershin told Itar-Tass.

Pershin said the court had failed to take into account the fact that the only investigative action for the defendant was a psychologic/psychiatric expert examination, which found Kvachkov fully sane. "Nothing else has been happening within the probe," the lawyer said.

He said he would appeal against the Lefortovo court's decision.

Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) said retired Colonel of Main Intelligence Department Kvachkov was a suspect under two articles of the Criminal Code: Article 279 and Article 30, Part 1 (attempted organization of armed mutiny) and Article 205, Part 1 (recruiting or involving persons in terrorism).

Kvachkov said he had been arrested on the testimony of a regional leader of the Narodnoye Opolcheniye (Militia) organization he leads.

The chief of Narodnoye Opolcheniye's Togliatti office was apprehended in the summer of 2010.

After ten days in custody he testified against Kvachkov.

"According to the testimony, there was a person in Togliatti, who sent two groups of people, armed with crossbows, to a forest to begin an armed uprising," Kvachkov said.

He said he was confident that the detainees' statements were distorted, in order to cast Narodnoye Opolcheniye and another organization – Minin and Pozharsky's Militia – as terrorist groups. "There are no facts in the case," the retired Colonel said.

Kvachkov was the key suspect in the case over the assassination attempt on the life of chief of RAO UES electric utility Chubais on March 17, 2005.

A jury found all the defendants in the assassination attempt case not guilty, in a marathon eight-hour session overnight to August 21, 2010.

In August, Kvachkov's lawyer said a psychiatric text had found his client fully sane. "According to the results of the psychological/psychiatric expert examination, conducted at the Serbsky state research centre for social and forensic psychiatry, Kvachkov was found fully sane," Pershin said.

The lawyer declined to give more details, citing his written pledge not to divulge sensitive information.

It was a second psychiatric check of Kvachkov. A similar examination was carried out within the framework of the Chubais attack case.

Kvachkov who had objected to the test, insisted that he was fully "adequate," and that nobody had ever doubted his mental state.

In early October, the Lefortovo court restricted Kvachkov's correspondence from prison.

"In the summer, prison guards confiscated three letters Kvachkov had written to his acquaintances. Specifically, the Colonel wrote "in his opinion, a Russian revolution is inevitable in the country," Pershin said.

"Remand prison personnel, as well as the investigator believe that these letters contain information that may hamper the finding of truth in the case; yet it is unclear how an answer to several pensioners and an expression of one's opinion can obstruct the case," Pershin noted.

The lawyer called the ruling 'illegitimate' and said he would appeal with the Moscow City Court and the European court of human rights.

"I'm confident of the decision by the European court, because the remand prison personnel, under the cover of law, limit my client in the expression of his opinion, not a public opinion, but his personal correspondence with individuals," he said.


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