MOSCOW, June 9 (RAPSI) – Russian nationalist Alexander Potkin, also known as Alexander Belov, who stands accused of laundering money allegedly embezzled from BTA Bank has been found sane, Potkin's lawyer, Ivan Mironov, told RAPSI on Tuesday.

Potkin was arrested on October 15, 2014 at the Hotel Intourist Kolomenskoe in Moscow on charges related to the embezzlement of $5 billion from BTA Bank. At the time of the arrest, Potkin allegedly had documents on him that effectively tied him to the embezzlement.

The court initially placed Potkin under house arrest, but later sent him to a pretrial detention center.

Investigators believe that Potkin was a mastermind in a money laundering operation in 2012-2014. He was also suspected of involvement in laundering money that was embezzled from BTA Bank by its former chairman Mukhtar Ablyazov.

Potkin’s lawyers deny the charges claiming that they are unsubstantiated and that he is being persecuted for political reasons.

On May 28, Moscow’s Khamovnichesky District Court extended the detention of Potkin until October 15. The investigation will expire on October 31, 2015.

Ablyazov, who allegedly defrauded BTA Bank of more than $6 billion, left Kazakhstan for the UK, where he was granted political asylum in 2011.