MOSCOW, March 5 - RAPSI. The Moscow Basmanny Court extended until June 7 the arrest of former police officer Dmitry Pavlyuchenkov, who is a suspect in the case of journalist Anna Politkovskaya's murder, the Russian Legal Information Agency (RAPSI/rapsinews.ru) reported from the court on Monday.
The court has dismissed Pavlyuchenkov's appeal to be put under house arrest.
The defendant's attorney, Karen Narsesyan, spoke of his client's intention to appeal the decision to extend his arrest with the Moscow City Court, as he considers the decision to be illegal.
The lawyer said that the court explained its arguments by stating that the defendant could leave the country because he has both relatives and friends abroad.
"This may have played some role during the Soviet Union, but now we are living in a totally different country," the attorney said. He said the investigators could maintain the same level of control over Pavlyuchenkov during house arrest as in an investigation isolation ward.
Narsesyan said he submitted an appeal on providing state protection to Pavlyuchenkov and his family, but no decision has been made thus far. Narsesyan added that his client has received threats as he is the only suspect who has agreed to testify in Politkovskaya's case. If he stops talking, the case may simply collapse, the attorney said.
Politkovskaya, who was known for her investigative journalism on human rights offenses in Chechnya, was killed in Moscow on October 7, 2006.
Five people are considered suspects in the case - Pavlyuchenkov, former police officer Sergei Kadzhikurbanov, and the Makhmudov brothers.