MOSCOW, July 14 (RAPSI) – An Uzbek court has handed down prison sentences to Rustam Madumarov and Gayane Avakyan, close acquaintances of the Uzbek president’s daughter, Gulnara Karimova, the Uzbek language service of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty announced on Monday.
Radio Ozodlik cited sources as saying that Madumarov and Avakyan were sentenced to ten and nine years in prison, respectively, but their cumulative sentences have been reduced by one-third.
The press service of the Uzbek Prosecutor General’s Office announced in February 2014 that several people, including Madumarov and Avakyan, were arrested in a criminal case opened against the management of Terra Group, Prime Media and Gamma Promotion. They were charged with large-scale tax evasion and withholding foreign currency.
According to Ozodlik, Madumarov and Avakyan had been Gulnara Karimova’s authorized business representatives until recently. Madumarov is a suspect in several money laundering and corruption cases in France, Latvia, Sweden and Switzerland.
Avakyan allegedly owns an offshore company called Takilant, which sold Uzbek phone licensing to the Swedish-Finnish telecommunications company TeliaSonera in 2007, Ozodlik said.
Swedish prosecutors opened a case against TeliaSonera last year on suspicion that it knew, or should have known, when it bought the license from Takilant in 2007, that the money went to President Islam Karimov’s family.