World Bulletin/News Desk
A Moscow court has arrested billionaire political leader Gleb Fetisov, weeks after he ramped up his political ambitions by partnering up with prominent opposition figures and launching a new political party, Moscow Times reports.
A fellow leader of the party suggested that the arrest was retaliation by influential private depositors who lost millions of dollars when a bank formerly owned by Fetisov was shut down by the regulator in January.
According to the report, worth $1.9 billion, Fetisov is one of the richest people to have ever found themselves behind bars in Russia's post-Soviet history, after former Yukos chief Mikhail Khodorkovsky and media magnate Vladimir Gusinsky. He is now the only billionaire at the helm of a Russian political party, following Mikhail Prokhorov's recent handover of leadership of the Civil Platform to his sister.
The Basmanny Court on Friday ruled to arrest Fetisov for a period ending April 20, hours after Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin announced the billionaire's detention. Fetisov is suspected of fraud at Moi Bank, which he sold in December, Markin said.
A Fetisov aide denied any wrongdoing by the businessman and attributed his prosecution to the recent advances in Fetisov's political career, including his banding together with a prominent Kremlin critic to launch a new party.
The arrest will undercut the party's preparations for the elections to the Moscow City Duma and other regional elections in September.
Last Mod: 03 Mart 2014, 11:14