Defendant in notorious drug trafficking case arrested in Germany
MOSCOW, March 2 (RAPSI) – Andrey Kovalchuk, one of the defendants in a criminal case over attempted cocaine smuggling from Argentina to Russia, has been arrested in Germany, lawyer Vladimir Zherebenkov has told RAPSI.
According to the lawyer, Berlin police officers arrested Kovalchuk on Thursday evening. Zherebenkov noted that officers acted in an appropriate manner. It is expected that the court will rule on measure of restraint for Kovalchuk on Friday.
Kovalchuk, along with Vladimir Kalmykov, Ishtimir Khudzhamov and Ali Abayanov, is charged with attempted drug smuggling on especially large scale. Earlier, a Moscow court detained Kalmykov and Khudzhamov until April 13, while Abayanov was ordered to stay in detention until April 12. Kovalchuk was put on the international wanted list.
According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, law enforcement authorities of Russia and Argentina have collaboratively suppressed delivery of a large consignment of drugs (cocaine) from Argentina to Europe. The drugs ready for delivery were found in one of the Russian embassy buildings in Buenos Aires in 2016. Cocaine allegedly belonged to an embassy technical staff member, whose duty journey was over by that time. During the conducted operation, Russian and Argentinean citizens were arrested, the ministry’s statement reads.