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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO . . .: Robert and Irina?

Remember Robert, the New York investment banker and impromptu knight in shining armor who saved Irina, a young Russian woman trapped into a life of prostitution by the Russian mafia? The article that ran in The Moscow Times Sept. 18, 1999 left many readers wondering what happened to the main characters of this modern-day fairy tale. So here's an update.

Irina is now under the wing of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's witness protection program. Her mother, who was threatened by the Russian mafia in her native St. Petersburg, is now living with her in the United States.

Robert could assume a new identity and join Irina, yet the life of a potato farmer somewhere in Idaho doesn't appeal to the man whose annual income on Wall Street exceeds seven figures.

The future of Robert and Irina's whirlwind romance is equally uncertain. Irina wants him to join the witness protection program and even asked the FBI to give him a job. Knowing of his expertise as a financial whiz, the bureau would love to employ Robert to fight financial crimes, but Robert has not accepted the offer.

Does this sound like a movie? Apparently Village Roadshow Productions, which just bought the rights to film Robert and Irina's love story, thought so. Riding high from their hit, "The Matrix," they are angling for another blockbuster with Keanu Reeves as Robert.

- Larisa Naumenko

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