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MOSCOW, December 16, 11:02 /ITAR-TASS World Service/. The investigation in a criminal case, which was opened against former defense minister Anatoly Serdyukov is completed, Kommersant daily reported. He is accused of negligence that resulted in the development of a vacation retreat of Serdyukov’s relative at the expense of the army. The accusation against him was not changed for a harsher accusation, as representatives of the Russian Investigative Committee hinted to do it.
“In other words, military detectives agreed with the fact the Defense Ministry had invested 56 million rubles (about $1.7 million) just over negligence of the then defense minister, Serdyukov, in the development the fishing and hunting vacation retreat Zhitnoye in Astrakhan Region that Anatoly Serdyukov’s father-in-law owned,” the daily noted. Due to “his negligent attitude to his service duties” a motor road with pontoon and motor bridges has been built to the commercial facility at the expense of the army, the grass carpet and Lombardy poplars have been planted on the plain terrain of the vacation retreat, the Italian furniture has been purchased for the cottages of the elite vacation retreat.
The daily noted that the details of the development of the vacation retreat had been investigated for a year, but Serdyukov had been a witness in the criminal case, though he had been controlling personally the construction of the road to Zhitnoye and assigned his envoy to purchase the greenery and the furniture for the vacation retreat.
Now Serdyukov and his lawyer will have to study the criminal case files. This procedure may ended ahead of time, if Serdyukov comes under the effect of the amnesty that will be enacted to mark the 20th anniversary of the Russian Constitution, the daily noted.
Only one person — Anatoly Serdyukov’s close friend, who occupied the post of head of the department of proprietary relations in the Russian Defense Ministry Yevgeniya Vasilyeva may hamper to relieve the former minister of criminal prosecution as it is expected, a Kommersant source close to the Main Military Investigation Department said. The prospects of Vasilyeva, who is charged under four harsh articles of the Russian Criminal Code in the criminal case over a massive property theft from OJSC Oboronservis of the Defense Ministry, are quite somber. Up to now military detectives treated her with lenience, for instance, permitting her to wait for a trial under the house arrest. Meanwhile, Vasilyeva refused to give testimony so far.
Meanwhile, if the criminal case against suspected mastermind of the frauds Vasilyeva is tried the former military official will understand that she faces a real term in prison, contrary to the former minister, and she may begin to testify. To avert this scenario, Serdyukov’s team is taking all the efforts to provide the qualified defense to Yevgeniya Vasilyeva in the court.
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