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KIROV, April 17 (Itar-Tass) - On Wednesday, the Leninsky Court of Kirov here will begin to hear a criminal case with regard to counsel Alexei Navalny and Pyotr Ofitserov, former director of the OOO Vyatka Forestry Company", who are accused of embezzling the property of the "Kirovles Ltd" enterprrise. The trial will be presided over by judge Sergei Blinov.
About 100 supporters of Navalny, among them oppositionist Boris Nemtsov, as well as those who oppose the prominent blogger, have arrived here in conection with the criminal case. An agreed-upon meeting in support of Navalny is expected to take place Wednesday from 08:00 to 09:00, Moscow time, in a place between the Puppet Theatre and the court building.
Navalny is charged with committing crimes, listed in Article 33, Part 3, and Article 160, Part 4, of the Criminal Code of the RF (arrangements for appropriation or embezzlement) and Ofitserov is charged under Article 33, Part 5, and Article 160, Part 4 (complicity in appropriation or embezzlement). The charges brought against Navalny envisage deprivation of freedom for a term of up to ten years with a fine of up to one million roubles.
On January 18, final charges were filed against Navalny and Ofitserov. They plead not guilty.
Kirov Region Governor Nikita Belykh is currently on a business trip in Moscow. The trip had been planned out before a date for the start of court hearings on Navalny was appointed.