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Kazakhstan to seek extradition of ex-banker Ablyazov from France

August 06, 2013, 11:08 UTC+3
"All existing possibilities will be used for that," spokesperson for the General Prosecutor’s Office Nurdaulet Suindikov said
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Photo ITAR-TASS

Photo ITAR-TASS

ASTANA, August 6 (Itar-Tass) - Kazakhstan will use all possibilities for the extradition from France of ex-banker Mukhtar Ablyazov wanted by the Kazakh law enforcement agencies, spokesperson for the General Prosecutor’s Office, Nurdaulet Suindikov, told a news conference on Tuesday.

“The Kazakh General Prosecutor’s Office makes every effort for the return of Ablyazov to Kazakhstan. All existing possibilities will be used for that,” he said.

Suindikov also said the French law enforcement agencies were currently considering Ablyazov’s extradition to Ukraine.

“France and Ukraine are participants in the European Convention on Extradition, while Kazakhstan is not in it,” the spokesman said.

“The final decision rests with France. We firmly intend to return him to Kazakhstan,” Suindikov said.

Ablyazov was detained in southern France on July 31. He was initially hiding in Great Britain but later fled after the High Court of London ruled to sentence him to 22 months in prison for disrespect of the court, the press service specified.

Ablyazov led BTA Bank from 2005 to 2009, when he was removed from office and accused of fraud. In February 2009 he fled to Great Britain.

The court of French Aix-en-Provence said last week that the arrested Kazakh businessman may be extradited upon a request from Ukraine or Russia, and not Kazakhstan.

“France has no agreement on extradition with Kazakhstan. At the same time extradition to Ukraine or Russia is possible if the court rules this,” a court representative said. At the present time it considers a request from Ukraine, where the Ablyazov-led BTA Bank was making operations.

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