MOSCOW, January 22 (RAPSI) – A new criminal case has been opened against Alexander Khoroshavin, ex-governor of the Sakhalin Region who stands accused of taking bribes, his lawyer Ivan Mironov told RAPSI on Friday.

Khoroshavin has been questioned as a suspect in the case connected with the Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk City Duma elections held in 2014, Mironov said.

Investigators announced in March 2015 that Khoroshavin and several other officials were arrested for allegedly taking a $5.6 million bribe to secure a contract to build a power unit for the Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk thermal plant.

Khoroshavin asked earlier either to place him under house arrest or to release him on 5-million-ruble bail, but the motion was dismissed.

Last April, Khoroshavin was charged in another criminal case with taking a bribe of at least 15 million rubles ($230,000) for providing credits on advantageous terms to one of the local businessmen. He pleaded not guilty.

President Vladimir Putin dismissed Khoroshavin from his post due to “loss of trust” in March 2015.