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Baturin’s case probe may last up to six months - lawyer

November 30, 2011, 18:43 UTC+3

The investigation into the case against businessman Viktor Baturin

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MOSCOW, November 30 (Itar-Tass) — The investigation into the case against businessman Viktor Baturin, accused of attempted fraud involving INTEKO promissory notes worth over 10 million roubles may last up to six months, his lawyer Igor Shabanov predicted on Wednesday. The defense is set to prove the entrepreneur's innocence in the meantime.

"I don't think the probe will be completed quickly. It's a long process - gathering evidence - which may last up to six months," the lawyer said, "in the meantime, we're ready to prove Baturin's innocence. The defense assumes that there were no fraudsters, but "an economic dispute between Baturin and INTEKO, whose president Oleg Soloshchansky /according to the lawyer, Soloshchansky is president of the company, although its site still lists as its president Yelena Baturina, the wife of former Moscow mayor - eds Itar-Tass/ tried to not to pay a debt under a promissory note by calling law-enforcement bodies to intervene.

"The promissory note is economically justified, it was issued in 2000 on the strength of a contract for an earlier loan, which INTEKO was unable to repay to another legal entity. It was a normal financial operation," Shabanov said.

The lawyer said Viktor Baturin believes "Soloshchansky is cheating not only him, but his sister Yelena Baturina," and does not rule out that Soloshchansky is in collusion with a third party.

Baturin's press secretary Anna Imerlin said the businessman is presently in the remand ward in Petrovka Street, 38. "As far as we know, he will be transferred to the Butyrka remand prison tomorrow. We don't know the conditions there," the press secretary noted. She explained that Baturin's mood is positive and that he intends to win the case.

Imerlin confirmed that Baturin's ex-wife Yana Rudkovskaya had taken their underage children to her home after his arrest. "The children are with Yana, and Viktor Nikolayevich does not object," she said.

Answering reporters' questions, she noted that Baturin's sister, Yelena Baturina, has not responded to his arrest yet.

"It's been quiet and calm; no calls or comments /from Yelena Baturina/," Imerlin said.

Moscow's Tverskoi court on Wednesday sanctioned Baturin's arrest until January 28, 2012.

According to the investigator, on November 28, Baturin presented a false promissory note of the INTEKO company at its office in Sadovaya-Spasskaya Street, 28. It was worth 10.8 million rubles, and Baturin demanded immediate payment.

INTEKO personnel had misgivings regarding the authenticity of the promissory note. They called police, who detained Viktor Baturin.

"One can conclude from the defendant's testimony that he was aware that the security was not authentic. In addition, he stated he had signed this promissory note at direct order of INTEKO president, his sister Yelena Baturina, and that there were several such promissory notes in his office," the Interior Ministry's main office reported.

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