MOSCOW, September 18 (RAPSI, Alexei Afonsky) – Svetlana Timonina, charged with embezzlement at the Bank of Moscow, has pleaded not guilty, RAPSI reported from Moscow's Meshchansky District Court on Friday.

Timonina said at the trial that began on Friday that she is not guilty and moreover, that she doesn’t understand the essence of the charges.

Timonina and Boris Shemyakin have been charged with fraud under Part 4 of Article 159 of the Criminal Code.

According to investigators, Shemyakin, president of Kuznetsky Most Development LLC, and Timonina, his vice-president, established Premier Estate LLC allegedly to borrow funds from the Bank of Moscow on behalf of third parties. 

They transferred the borrowed funds to Yelena Baturina, the wife of former Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov, and to Oleg Soloshchansky, head of Baturina’s construction company Inteco. Furthermore, the land plot they bought from Baturina was used as collateral in transactions with the Bank of Moscow.

Shemyakin has denied the charges. He was released on 10 million rubles ($153,730 at current exchange rate) bail in 2011, but in the spring of 2015 the Tverskoy District Court in Moscow ruled that the money be turned over to the state in view of the fact that Shemyakin has been living in London.