MOSCOW, February 6 (RAPSI) – Ukraine has formally asked Russia to to extradite its former President Viktor Yanukovich and his associates to stand trial, Interfax reported on Friday, citing Ukraine's Prosecutor General Vitaliy Yarema.

Yanukovich is suspected of organising a criminal group under Article 255 of the Criminal Code, according to Yarema.

The adoption of the law on criminal proceedings in absentia would enable the Prosecutor General's Office to officially bring charges against Yanukovich, his associates and turn to court, Yarema said.

On January 12, 2015, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov announced that a special Interpol commission had put former President Viktor Yanukovich, his son Aleksandr Yanukovich, former Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov and several other high-ranking Ukrainian government officials on the international wanted list.

Viktor Yanukovich left Ukraine in late February 2014 due to mass protests. He later said that he had to do this out of fear for his life and the lives of his family members. Several criminal cases have been opened against him and his entourage in Ukraine. Yanukovich’s current whereabouts are unknown.