MOSCOW, September 9 (RAPSI) – Two defendants in a case over trafficking of surrogate mothers’ children have agreed to cooperate with investigators, lawyer Igor Trunov informs RAPSI on Wednesday.
Manager Valentina Chernyshova and lawyer Roman Yemashev, both employees of Rosyurconsulting firm, petitioned an investigator to enter into a plea bargain; the investigator issued warrants, which were submitted to a Deputy Prosecutor General, according to Trunov. The defendants plead guilty; undertake to cooperate with investigators; agree to expose their co-conspirators, the roles those played in the scheme; reveal the methods used to conceal their activities; report the persons to whom the babies were transferred, the warrants read, the lawyer said.
The plea was made as the defendants expected that as a result the preventive measures were to be mitigated, Trunov observed, reminding that earlier both defendants denied their firm was involved in unlawful activities.
On September 9, the Moscow City Court upheld detention of CEO of the European Surrogacy Center Vladislav Melnikov in this case. The man will stay detained until September 14.
Earlier, the court upheld detention of three other defendants Roman Yemashev, Kirill Anisimov and Taras Ashitkov.
In total, seven people involved in the case are in detention. One more accused woman is under house arrest.
In January, law enforcement found a body of a dead newborn boy in a flat in the Moscow Region’s town of Odintsovo. There were also three other kids there along with a nurse. Investigators believe surrogate mothers gave birth to the children to transfer them later to foreign parents.
However, defense lawyers believe that investigators failed to discover cause-effect links between actions’ of the doctors and the baby’s death. Moreover, they state that current legislation does not prohibit citizens to become parents using vitro fertilization and surrogate services.