MOSCOW, August 22 (Itar-Tass) - Moscow's Khamovniki district court on Thursday sanctioned the arrest of Ilya Kalashnikov, accused of attempted kidnapping of a banker.
"The court believes the investigator’s petition to have the suspect under arrest is substantiated," judge Olesya Ustinova said. The investigator said Kalashnikov, 30, had offered 400 million rubles to obtain the abduction and murder of the head of the Moscow-based Fondservisbank, Alexander Volovnik.
To catch Kalashnikov, detectives played the role of perpetrators to stage the crime. He was detained as he was passing over the money. A special task force unit was involved in the sting operation. Former Russian intelligence employee Anna Champan was reportedly Volovnik's adviser.
At the beginning of the Thursday hearing, Kalashnikov wrote a petition to replace his lawyer, Ivan Krizhanovsky, stating that his relatives would hire another in a week. However, the judge turned down the petition on the grounds that he had not provided evidence that he had another lawyer.
"The suspect is unemployed, leads an amoral life, and is accused of a serious crime. If at large, he may flee or put pressure on other participants in the legal proceedings," the prosecutor said.
Kalashnikov objected by saying "I have a wife and an underage child. I have nowhere to flee. I ask not to put me in a pre-trial detention centre."
However, the court agreed with the prosecutor and sanctioned Kalashnikov's two-month arrest on charges of attempted murder, abduction and extortion.