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France extradites Russian citizen charged with cocaine smuggling

December 28, 2016, 21:25 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, December 28. /TASS/. French authorities have extradited to Russia a holder of the Russian passport accused of cocaine smuggling, Alexander Kurennoi, the official spokesman for the Office of Russia’s Prosecutor General said on Wednesday.

"On Wednesday, the appropriate agencies of the French Republic extradited to Russia the citizen of the Russian Federation Stanislav Moloko," he said. "The extradition answered a request from the Office of Russia’s Prosecutor General. Moloko was escorted during the extradition by officers of the Russian Federal Service for Penitentiaries and the national bureau of Interpol."

Moloko is charged with smuggling as a member of an organized group and with an illegal obtaining, storage and transportation of drugs for the purpose of selling them. A criminal case over him was instituted by the branch of the Federal Security Service (FSB) for St Petersburg and the Leningrad region.

Investigators say Moloko made conspiracy with a group of individuals in December 1997 for the purpose of gross smuggling of cocaine from Venezuela to Russia and its subsequent sales.

In December 1997, his accomplices dispatched a cargo of furniture from Venezuela to St Petersburg, in which they concealed about ten kilograms of cocaine.

Upon arrival at the airport of St. Petersburg, the furniture was reloaded into lorries for further transportation but a member of the criminal group escorting the consignment was stopped by FSB operatives as the cars were about to leave the compound of the airport’s customs warehouse.

Moloko got away from criminal prosecution and left Russia. The authorities placed him on the federal wanted list in February 1998 and on the international list, in January 2001.

He was detained in France in September 2015. A month later, the Office of Russia’s Prosecutor General issued a petition for his extradition to Russia, which the French side answered in December 2016.

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