BTA Bank helped apprehend Ablyazov 02 августа 2013, 12:54
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Mukhtar Ablyazov. Photo by Yaroslav Radlovskiy©
Former head of BTA Bank Mukhtar Ablyazov was found thanks to BTA bank’s efforts and was arrested after the information about his whereabouts was transferred to the French authorities, RIA Novosti writes. “The arrest became possible thanks to the efforts of BTA to return the assets embezzled by Ablyazov from the bank. After Ablyazov fled Great Britain in violation of the London High Court's ruling, BTA was working to located his whereabouts and discovered him in the south of France some time ago. The bank transferred the collected information to the French authorities who acted based on the Interpol arrest warrant issued upon Ukraine’s request and apprehended Ablyazov,” a source close to the case said. The source close to the investigation said that Ablyazov was tracked down through a former wife of his Ukrainian business partner Yelena Tischenko. Last week she attended a hearing on one of the cases related to Ablyazov and then visited a villa in France. This villa was where the exile banker was arrested later. The Bank’s management believes that Ablyazov should remain under arrest so that the embezzled assets are not dispersed and the ex-banker does not flee again. The judges who decided yesterday on whether to leave Ablyazov in custody of let him walk on bail until the extradition hearings also shared the opinion that Ablyazov was likely to go on the run at first opportunity. They decided to leave him jailed as he could not provide sufficient guarantees that he sould not fee again. Managing Director of BTA Bank Pavel Prosyakin stated: “The Bank hails apprehension of Ablyazov. This became possible thanks to the bank’s efforts to return billions of dollars embezzled by Ablyazov with the help of the British justice. We wanted him to be arrested to prevent further disperse of the assets that the British court has ruled to be returned to the owners. He is currently under arrest and we are optimistic about returning the assets subject to the court's ruling.” Besides, BTA Bank intends to continue fighting in courts to get compensations of damages for those who caused the losses and took part in hiding the embezzled assets. Mukhtar Ablyazov was arrested not far from Cannes. An official representative of the Regional Service of France’s judicial police in Marseille confirmed that the exile Kazakhstan tycoon was arrested. According to him, Ablyazov was arrested on July 31 in Mouans-Sartoux not far from Grasse. The police operation involved 3 investigators, 12 police officers and a helicopter. The Aix-en-Provence court decided to leave Mukhtar Ablyazov in custody until the decision on his extradition is made. The extradition is awaited by Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine as Ablyazov is wanted in all of these countries for major fraud. Kazakhstan has no extradition agreement with France and extradition to Russia would face limitations. That’s why Ablyazov will most likely to extradited to Ukraine. The defense of the exile banker is planning to achieve his release before the extradition ruling is made. Ukraine now has 40 days to submit documents substantiating the extradition claims to the French authorities.