News 11 january — 10:18

House Arrest Of Former Russian Minister Ulyukayev Extended

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A Moscow court has extended the pretrial house arrest of former Economic Development Minister Aleksei Ulyukayev by three months, until April 15, RFE/RL reports.

The Basmanny district court granted prosecutors' request for an extension on January 10.

Ulyukayev is accused of taking a $2 million bribe in exchange for his approval to allow state oil giant Rosneft to purchase a majority stake in regional oil company Bashneft from the government.

Prosecutors argued that if allowed to leave his home, Ulyukayev could influence the investigation because many witnesses were his subordinates in government. They also said he might flee the country even though his passport has been confiscated.

Ulyukayev, 61, had asked to be released from house arrest on a pledge not to leave Moscow.

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