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MOSCOW, October 11. (ITAR-TASS). — Swedish police removed the request of Russia concerning the investigation, detention and possible extradition of Hermitage Capital CEO William Browder, who is accused of fraud involving Gazprom shares.
"The letter sent by Swedish police to his lawyers said that “information regarding Mr. Browder has been removed “on the basis of “instruction given by the General Secretariat of Interpol,” the Fund’s spokesperson told Itar-Tass.
As said in the notice from Sweden, Interpol is considering a request from the Russian Federation “as having a political character” and cannot accept it in accordance with the constitution.
“Thus, we can assure you that Mr. Browder will not be detained on the basis of a request from Russia, which Interpol considers contrary to the Constitution,” the fund’s spokesperson quoted the Swedish police statement.
Earlier, France denied Russia’s request on similar grounds.
Russia issued an international arrest warrant against British citizen William Browder on July 25 on charges of Gazprom shares theft in the amount of nearly 3 billion rubles.
October 8, the Basmanny District Court of Moscow upheld Browder’s criminal prosecution, declining the appeal of his attorney.
In addition, July 11, Tverskoy District Court of Moscow sentenced in absentia to nine years in prison CEO of the Fund for tax evasion amounting to more than 522 million rubles. The court also found the guilt of the fund auditor Sergei Magnitsky. The latter acted in the interests of Browder, granting him "tax evasion on preliminary arrangement by group of persons on a large scale."
Magnitsky was released from punishment in connection with his death, and criminal proceedings against him were stopped.