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Russian businessman unable to explain his attempt to run away from Cambodian police

November 13, 2013, 10:38 updated at: November 13, 2013, 14:45 UTC+3 BANGKOK
Later in the day, the businessman is to attend a hearing at the court in Cambodia's capital Phnom Penh over his extradition to Russia, where he is accused of fraud
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BANGKOK, November 13 (Itar-Tass) - Russian businessman Sergei Polonsky arrested by Cambodian police on Monday after several hours of chase in the jungle, was unable to explain his attempt to flee.

"I don't know why I did it," the newspaper Cambodia Daily cited him on Wednesday. Later in the day, the businessman is to attend a hearing at the court in Cambodia's capital Phnom Penh over his extradition to Russia, where he is accused of fraud.

Investigation and arrest

On Tuesday, the Russian Interior Ministry reported that Cambodia had officially notified it about Polonsky's arrest.

"In case of positive decision, the two countries will coordinate the date and conditions for detainee transfer," the police officer said.

As of now, the Russian investigators have completed all the investigative actions which can be done in the suspect's absence. Further investigation requires Polonsky's presence in Russia.

Cambodian authorities confirmed Sergei Polonsky's arrest in the town of Sihanoukville in the south of the country on Monday morning.

"Polonsky was arrested at Russian government's request," police spokesman Lt-Gen Kirt Chantharith said. "He will be extradited to his Motherland, but the extradition date will be set later."

Charges against Polonsky

On June 14, Russian investigators charged the businessman in absentia with fraud in the Kutuzovskaya Milya housing construction project, where more than 80 citizens were recognized as injured parties. The investigators said the Polonsky-controlled company had received about 5.7 billion rubles (over $173 million) from investors but then suspended construction failing to meet the contract terms. The company administration then deliberately initiated bankruptcy and liquidation proceedings.

On September 26, the Russian Interior Ministry put Polonsky on the international wanted list.

Chantharith said Cambodian authorities had no intention to delay Polonsky's extradition.

Pavel Seskanov, head of the consulate department of the Russian Embassy in Cambodia, said he had visited Polonsky in a remand ward.

"He has not complained about the prison conditions. He's awaiting a hearing," Seskanov told Itar-Tass on Tuesday.

The businessman's lawyers said they would ask the court to release their client on bail and let him return to the Motherland of his own accord.

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