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Prosecutor’s Office checks legitimacy of Bashneft share sale probe

September 24, 2014, 18:57 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Russian investigators earlier placed billionaire Vladimir Yevtushenkov, the owner of Sistema holding company that controls Bashneft, under house arrest
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© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Bobylev

MOSCOW, September 24. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian Prosecutor General’s Office is checking the legitimacy of a criminal probe into the sale of oil company Bashneft’s shares, a lawyer of a suspect in the probe said on Wednesday.

Lawyer Ilnur Salimyanov who defends the interests of Ural Rakhimov, the former head of Bashneft accused of the company’s illegal privatization, said he filed a complaint to the Prosecutor General’s Office in mid-September against the institution of the criminal case.

“I hope the Prosecutor’s Office will act pursuant to law and examine the complaint within the legislatively established time limits. It [the Prosecutor’s Office] may extend the time of examining my complaint to 30 days,” the lawyer said.

Ural Rakhimov, a son of former Bashkortostan head Murtaza Rakhimov, is accused of legalizing ill-gotten funds and money embezzlement during the privatization of Bashneft. The exact place where Ural Rakhimov is currently staying is unknown.

The lawyer said on Wednesday Ural Rakhimov might be arrested in absentia.

Russian investigators earlier placed billionaire Vladimir Yevtushenkov, the owner of Sistema holding company that controls Bashneft, under house arrest on suspicion of involvement in a case of illegal privatization of oil companies in Bashkortostan.

The oil firms privatized in Bashkortostan are now part of Bashneft, which is majority-controlled by Sistema.

Russian investigators accuse Yevtushenkov of involvement in a money-laundering scheme, in which Sistema acquired Bashkortostan oil firms that had been privatized by Ural Rakhimov.

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