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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Warsaw Rejects Russian Plea To Extradite Former Adviser

COMBINED REPORTS. -- WARSAW, Poland


A Warsaw court Thursday rejected a Russian request to extradite a former Russian presidential adviser on bribery charges, saying it found no legal grounds to do so.


Moscow prosecutors have sought extradition of Sergei Stankevich, a one-time aide to Russian President Boris Yeltsin, arguing he took a dollars 10,000 bribe for organizing a concert on Red Square in 1992 when Stankevich was Moscow's deputy mayor.


Stankevich has said the money was payment for lectures he gave in Britain, and that he gave the money to charity.


Stankevich left Russia in November 1995 before his term expired as a member of parliament, when he would have lost parliamentary immunity.


Stankevich was detained April 18 in Warsaw on an Interpol warrant for investigation of bribe-taking and corruption and has been under police watch.


At Thursday's session, the Warsaw Provincial Court ruled that Polish laws hold only Polish officials, not foreigners, accountable to bribery charges.


Stankevich expressed his satisfaction with the ruling and said he planned to stay in Poland, where he felt safe.


In Moscow, Prosecutor General Yury Skuratov said he would write to his Polish counterpart Friday urging reconsideration of Russia's extradition request, Interfax said.