Judge refuses to recuse himself in trial against Russia’s top anti-corruption official
MOSCOW, February 13 (RAPSI) - Judge Artur Karpov from Moscow’s Basmanny District Court refused on Friday to recuse himself from case against Denis Sugrobov, former head of the Interior Ministry’s Economic Security and Anti-Corruption Department who had been charged with abuse of power, RAPSI reports from the courtroom.
Lawyer Eduard Isetsky said that earlier the judge illegally ruled to seize Sugrobov’s assets, dismissed an appeal filed by a previous attorney who had been questioned by investigators and held a closed hearing without good reason.
Sugrobov supported his attorney’s motion. A prosecutor and an investigator in turn strongly opposed Isetsky’s complaint.
President Vladimir Putin signed a decree to relieve Sugrobov of his duties at the Interior Ministry on February 21. Sugrobov reportedly tendered his resignation after the Investigative Committee and the Federal Security Service (FSB) searched the offices of four of his subordinates who were charged with bribe extortion and abuse of power.
According to investigators, police General Sugrobov and his deputy General Boris Kolesnikov tried to provoke an officer of the Federal Security Service (FSB) by offering $10,000 a month for his protection. Sugrobov was charged with organizing a criminal group, abuse of power and bribery last May.
Kolesnikov was arrested in February. No charges had been filed against him when he jumped out of a window during questioning at the Investigative Committee in June. Later the Basmanny District Court said no evidence was found of assisted suicide.
In late August, Moscow’s Basmanny District Court seized assets owned by Sugrobov and Kolesnikov. The seized property has been reportedly estimated at over 300 million rubles (app. $4.5 million).