MOSCOW, November 11 (RAPSI) - Investigators have initiated money laundering case against former Bank of Moscow President Andrei Borodin and his former first deputy Dmitry Akulinin, Russia's Interior Ministry announced on Monday.

Earlier, a fraud case was initiated against them. Borodin and Akulinin used their position to organize from 2008 till 2011 the transfer of at least 50 billion rubles ($1,5 billion) from the account of Bank of Moscow to the accounts of the affiliated commercial companies in Cyprus, the Interior Ministry said. Then the defendants laundered the funds via affiliated non-resident companies also registered in Cyprus.

According to the investigators, former bankers conducted illegal financial transactions in excess of 623 million rubles ($19 million).

In late 2010, Russia launched a criminal case against Borodin and Akulinin on charges of large-scale fraud involving state funds. They were accused of improperly loaning $443 million to shell companies, which then transferred the cash to Yelena Baturina, the wife of Moscow ex-mayor Yury Luzhkov and the owner of the construction empire Inteco.

Borodin, whose Bank of Moscow functioned as the capital's chief investment vehicle under Luzhkov, fled to the UK in 2011. In November 2011 the Russian Interpol bureau put Borodin and Akulinin on the international wanted list. In March 2013 Borodin was granted political asylum in the UK.

On May 27, 2013, the Swiss Office of the Attorney General (OAG) launched a criminal case against Borodin and has frozen the CHF 354 million (around $368 million) in his Swiss bank accounts, and has declared Bank of Moscow an injured party in the case. The bank now may file for damages, to be paid from Borodin's arrested funds. Similar lawsuits may also be filed against him in other countries. In August, the property of Borodin was seized in Latvia.