YEKATERINBURG, July 2 (Itar-Tass) - The preliminary hearing of the case against deputy mayor of Yekaterinburg Viktor Konteyev, accused of taking a large bribe, extortion and masterminding murders, will begin at the Kurgan region court on July 15, the court's press service told Itar-Tass on Tuesday, noting that the hearing would be held behind closed doors.
"We expect several petitions to be lodged at the hearings, including Konteyev's request for jury trial," the press service underlined.
On April 16, the Sverdlovsk region court ruled to pass the case to the Kurgan region court as the most serious crimes of which Konteyev is accused were committed in the Kurgan region.
Viktor Konteyev will remain in custody until October 1, 2013. There are 12 defendants in the prisoner's dock, including Konteyev.
Depending on the role of each defendant, they were charged under seven articles of the penal code, including extortion, murder and abduction. The probe into the case against Konteyev's wife Larisa made separate proceedings. She has been on Interpol's wanted list for several months.
Viktor Konteyev, 58, was detained in August 2011. The investigators charged him with masterminding the murder of two business persons, Andrei Volkov and Valery Khudyakov, who had hindered the supplies of products to a food store through the Petukhovsky customs post.
On August 23, 2011, the Verkh-Isetsky court of Yekaterinburg sanctioned his arrest. He was later charged with taking a five-million-rouble bribe.
"Konteyev, together with his wife Larisa and his associates demanded that director of food store # 4 Tatyana Rusina and her daughter Yelena Rusina transfer to him the rights to their stakes in the authorized capital of the company, whose market value reached over 140 million roubles," investigators said earlier.
Taking part in the investigation were agents of the regional department of the Federal Security Service and the Interior Ministry's main department for the Ural Federal District. The investigators reported they had come under pressure during the probe.