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First Deputy PM Shuvalov not on list of witnesses in case former economy minister — source

August 08, 18:22 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Previously, some media reported that Igor Shuvalov may be questioned as the chief of the former minister

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First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov

First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov

© Sergei Savostyanov/TASS

MOSCOW, August 8. /TASS/. First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov has not been registered as a witness in the case of former Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev, who is accused of taking a $2 mln bribe, a source familiar with the situation told TASS.

"Shuvalov is not on the list of witnesses," the source said.

Previously, some media reported that Shuvalov may be questioned as the person who was charge of the financial and economic block of the government and was the chief of the former minister.

In her turn, the court’s press secretary Emilia Khil partially confirmed this information saying that according to the data she had Shuvalov was not on the list of witnesses.

"To the best of my knowledge, Shuvalov is not on the list of the declared witnesses. But this is not for sure," she said.

The court’s press secretary confirmed the intention of the public prosecution to interrogate Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin as a witness in court.

Preliminary hearing

On Tuesday, the court held a preliminary hearing and scheduled the consideration of the case on the merits on August 16. This will be a public hearing.

Russia’s Investigative Committee charged Ulyukaev under Part 6 of Article 290 of Russia’s Criminal Code ("Taking a bribe by a person holding public office in the RF, in a particularly large amount"). The former minister does not admit his guilt.

Detention of the federal minister, which was the first one in history of modern Russia, took place on November 14, 2016. According to the Investigative Committee, Ulyukayev was detained on receiving a bribe of $2 mln. The bribe was given for the ministry’s positive expertise in privatization of Bashneft oil company. That allowed Rosneft to buy out 50.08% of Bashneft shares from the state. Moreover, according to the investigation, the case concerns extortion coupled with threats to representatives of Rosneft.

On November 15, 2016, President Vladimir Putin dismissed Ulyukayev from his post in connection with the loss of confidence. The former minister is under house arrest, which has been extended until January 27, 2018.

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