MOSCOW, October 25 (Itar-Tass) — A subpoena has been sent to former Moscow mayor Yuri Luzhkov summoning him to the Investigation Department of the Interior Ministry (MVD) within a criminal case on embezzlement in the Bank of Moscow. The ex-mayor is a witness in a high-profile case of fraud with budget funds. Yuri Luzhkov himself sees a political aspect in the investigators’ interest towards his person.
Luzhkov is to testify on embezzlement by the management of the Bank of Moscow, in particular, issuing of an unsecured credit worth 12.76 billion roubles by the bank to JSC Premier Estate, Novye Izvestiya writes. According to an investigation version, these funds were transferred to personal accounts of Luzhkov’s wife – head of Inteco Yelena Baturina. The MVD Investigation Department opened the criminal case over the fact of fraud with the city budget funds against former President of the Bank of Moscow Andrei Borodin and his deputy Dmitry Akulinin late last year.
Luzhkov himself believes that his summons is linked with his recent interview with Radio Liberty in which he made critical statements of United Russia. The strongest statement were his words that “Medvedev is not prepared for the settlement of the country administration tasks at the highest state level, which is true for the post of not only the president, but also prime minister.” Luzhkov does not intend to hide from the investigation and is going to return to Russian from abroad soon. “If he agrees to come, then he sees freedom guarantees for himself,” believes political analyst Dmitry Travin. “Chichvarkin and others do not come, because they do not see such guarantees.”
Luzhkov assured the journalists who got him on the phone that he is staying abroad at present attending an international scientific conference where he delivers lectures on economics, but “upon return to Moscow as a law-abiding citizen is ready to establish contact with the investigation,” Kommersant writes.