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US court to set free Russian figure skating coach

September 11, 2012, 2:43 UTC+3
His release from custody in Maryland will be conditioned by the demand that he surrender to the judiciary in Essex County
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Photo EPA/ITAR-TASS

Photo EPA/ITAR-TASS

WASHINGTON, September 11 (Itar-Tass) – Russian figure skating coach Genrikh Sretensky, who was arrested in the U.S. earlier this month on sexual harassment charges, should be released from custody soon, his lawyer Rene Sandler said Monday.

His release from custody in Maryland will be conditioned by the demand that he surrender to the judiciary in Essex County, NY, where a warrant for his arrest had been issued.

Rene Sandler said the court in Maryland had found the warrant to be inconsistent with some of the state’s legislative provisions.

Also, the judges demanded that Sretensky turn in his passport – apparently in a bid to deny him an opportunity to flee the country.

Finally, the court took Sretensky’s property as a pledge until he reports to the judiciary in New York.

The charges he faces in New York include “felony sexual abuse, forcible touching and child endangerment”. Sretensky is also accused in a lawsuit of fondling a teenage figure skater in a hotel room.

Genrikh Sretensky competed for the Soviet Union in ice dancing with partner Natalya Annenko in the mid-1980’s. The pair were three-time European bronze medalists /in 1986, 1987 and 1989/ and one-time European silver medalists /in 1988/. They turned over to professional sports in 1989.

Until his arrest, Sretensky coached at the Gardens Ice House in Laurel, Maryland.

The incident involving the teenage member of the U.S. junior figure skating team allegedly occurred at a hotel in Lake Placid in July 2011 when a major figure skating competition was in progress.

The lawsuit, which the lawyer Sandler would not comment on, was filed by the girl’s father. He demands 5 million dollars in a compensation for damage.

So far, the judiciary has not issued any summons or notifications either to the defendant or to his lawyer yet.

Sretensky denies any guilt on his part and will defend his dignity resolutely.

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