News Corp. Unit Angry About Raid

News Corp.'s Moscow-based outdoor advertising unit said Tuesday that it would complain to the Prosecutor General's Office because of damage to its "business reputation and financial stability" after raids by state investigators.

The raids were part of a case against a city official accused of allowing the unit access to billboards for cut prices, and the investigators have no claims against Russia's largest ad company, News Outdoor, said in a statement. Investigators took documents from the unit's headquarters and two production sites, and searched the offices of the city's advertising committee, Vedomosti reported.

Vladimir Makarov, head of the city of Moscow's advertising committee, was not immediately available to comment when called about the case against his subordinate. The Investigative Committee of the Prosecutor General's Office also declined to comment.

"News Outdoor became a virtual hostage to the power structures' actions even as President Dmitry Medvedev says ensuring stability for private business in Russia and making excessive checks by law enforcement agencies unacceptable are priorities," the company said.

A Moscow appeals court in June rejected a case brought by the city advertising committee against the company for gaining access to billboards at about 10 percent of their cost in 2002 to 2007, News Outdoor said.

News Corp., Rupert Murdoch's media company, said last year that it might sell News Outdoor.