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MOSCOW, November 29 (Itar-Tass) — Alexander Ignatenko, the former first deputy prosecutor of the Moscow region, doesn’t plead guilty to any of corruption and fraud charges against him, his lawyer Alexander Perepyolkin told Itar-Tass on Thursday.
“My client is denying all accusations and is going to prove his innocence in court,” Perepyolkin said.
Russian prosecutors are accusing Ignatenko, who’s currently staying in Poland, of taking huge bribes and fraud.
Michael Krulikowski, Polish Deputy Justice Minister for international contacts, told journalists on Thursday that Ignatenko would be extradited to Russia before February 9, 2013.
Krulikowski said that the decision to extradite Ignatenko had been passed but the question remained how the extradition would be organized. Poland has agreed to the charges of corruption launched against Ignatenko but didn’t see any facts of fraud in his actions. Krulikowski said that Ignatenko could face trial only on charges approved by a country that extradites him.
“I think that Poland will extradite Ignatenko as soon as Russia provides guarantees that fraud charges have been excluded from the indictment,” the lawyer emphasized.
Alexander Ignatenko, the former first deputy prosecutor of the Moscow region, is facing charges of patronage to the outlawed gambling business in the territory of the Moscow region. He has been put on the Interpol international wanted list on charges of fraud and of taking bribes worth 47 million rubles from organizes of the illegal gambling business.
The Polish Internal Security Agency detained Ignatenko on January 1, 2012 as he was leaving the resort town of Zakopane where he had arrived several days before to meet his family.
Poland has held five court hearings on Ignatenko’s case. The Court of Appeals in Krakow, held on March 7 this year, passed an extradition verdict which is not subject to appeal and which allows the Polish authorities to extradite Ignatenko to Russia. However, the Justice Ministry has to make the final decision, according to Polish laws.
Alexander Ignatenko has spent almost a year in a Polish prison pending his extradition to Russia. A district court in the town of Novy-Sonch decided to extend his arrest until February 9, 2013. Polish law enforcers have two months left for organizing the extradition procedures.