Moscow court issues arrest warrant for suspect in grand theft from BTA Bank
MOSCOW, January 20 - RAPSI. The court has issued an arrest warrant for a suspect in the case of a high-profile theft from the Kazakh BTA Bank, the Interior Ministry's Investigative Department reports on Friday.
The suspect is former BTA Bank Board Chairman Roman Solodchenko. The report says he was a member of an organized criminal group headed by Mukhtar Ablyazov, the former chairman of the BTA Bank's Moscow subsidiary.
Investigators believe Solodchenko is to blame for the bank's forfeiture of its controlling share in the Moscow branch and the reduction of BTA Bank's interest in BTA Bank (Moscow) from 53 to 22 percent.
Solodchenko has been charged with abuse of power and faces up to four years in prison. He has been placed on the international wanted list.
According to the department, between 2006 and 2008 Amlyazov arranged the receipt of loans worth 776.4 million rubles ($24.6 million), 19 million euros and $1.4 billion from BTA Bank by other companies, which had no intention of repaying.
Investigators maintain that BTA Bank has sustained an unprecedented loss resulting in its restructuring under Kazakh bankruptcy legislation. The Kazakh authorities have charged Ablyazov, Solodchenko and another top bank manager, Zaksakyk Zharimbetov, with large-scale theft.
In December 2009, 12 former bank employees were found guilty of setting up a criminal group with the intent of financial fraud, large-scale theft, abuse of power and crime concealment. They have been given from two to eight years in prison. The convicts did not admit to the crimes.