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LOS ANGELES, April 7 (Itar-Tass) - A new team of lawyers will be defending a Russian citizen Viktor Bout.
The businessman’s wife Alla Bout told Itar-Tass on the telephone “lawyer Alexei Biletsky has begun formation of a team to defend his interests in the US.”
Commenting on extending the cooperation with the current lawyer Albert Dayan, she said “we are not considering this aspect as yet.”
“Right now, it is important to us to receive a response from the US prosecution to the appeal from the current lawyer,” Alla Bout said. “Dayan once again failed to come to a meeting with his defendant at the Marion prison /Illinois/, which had been planned in accordance with all regulations of the penitentiary.”
“Viktor and the lawyer met for the last time three months ago,” she added.
The woman said her husband experienced difficutlites with food.
“Due to the prison’s cut budget, the food supplies and portions have been reduced, and he says they are not sufficient,” she said. “We are trying to help as much as we can, we are sending money so that he could buy something at the prison’s store, Viktor stands firm, including due to the support from those sending letters and postcards to him, he says those are enormous resources for his strength.”
Besides, Alla Bout said early next week she “and Alexei Biletsky will file a suit to the Moscow court against the Ren TV television channel.” The claim will refer to the “Russian Mafia Abroad” film, where Viktor became one of the characters.
Bout, found guilty in November 2010 of arms smuggling conspiracy, was sentenced by a New York court to 25 years in prison.
Moscow believes that the evidence collected against Bout “is too thin to make far-reaching accusations”. The Foreign Ministry thinks that a situation where Russian citizens fall victim to U.S. justice on the basis of broad interpretation of law is unacceptable.
Bout was arrested in Bangkok in March 2008 at a U.S. request and extradited to the U.S. in November 2010. He has been charged with masterminding the sale of a large shipment of arms.
Four charges were brought against him: criminal conspiracy to kill US nationals, conspiracy to kill officials in public service, criminal conspiracy to purchase and sell antiaircraft missiles and criminal conspiracy to supply weapons to terrorist groups. The Russian citizen pleaded not guilty on all the points.
Bout is convinced that his case “is anti-Russian”. “My case is purely political. Despite the American procedures the Russian public knows the truth. My case shows the real condition of the American justice system of a police state close to dictatorship,” Bout said.