Vienne prosecutor interrogated Aliyev in Malta for three days 07 марта 2012, 17:06
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Rakhat Aliyev. Photo courtesy of azattyk.org
Former ambassador of Kazakhstan to Austria Rakhat Aliyev was interrogated in Malta, Die Presse writes. Vienne prosecutor Bettina Valner went to Malta to meet with Aliyev accused of murder of Nurbank's top managers.
The purpose of the 3-day interrogation is "for justice authorities to evaluate this case based on the personal impression of the suspect". Die Presse notes that the necessity of the prosecutor's trip arose since law-enforcement authorities supposed that Aliyev, concerned about his security, would not agree to arrive to Austria for interrogation.
4 alleged allies of Aliyev were interrogated as well recently. They were born in Kazakhstan, but currently live in Austria. All the suspects deny involvement in murder of the bankers. According to sources, law-enforcement authorities think that the suspicions "are there, but are not that grave". None of the 4 suspects have been arrested.
Meanwhile, Wiener Zeitung and Kronen Zeitung writes that the EU Commission on Justice Issues applied to Eurojust that coordinates law-enforcement activities of EU countries requesting involvement into the investigations on Aliyev's case. EU Commissioner Viviane Reding called Eurojust to render support to the authorities of EU countries "for eliminations of the discrepancies in jurisdictions of the parties and effecting investigation". Austrian Ministry of Justice stated that Vienne prosecutors are holding an active investigation of Aliyev's case.
Austria adjudicated Kazakhstan from extradition of the ex-ambassador and took an obligation to perform its own investigation of the case. In the case materials Aliyev is named Rakhat Shoraz. The actions of Austrian law-enforcement authorities have been criticized at the European level several times. Vienne has been blamed for having Aliyev unpunished at the territory of Austria.
Aliyev keeps denying his involvement. He has passed a message through his lawyers that he has no relation to murder of the two bankers. Vienne prosecutors still have not made any decision on whether to drop Aliyev's case or charge him with the murders.
In 2011 Aliyev was accused of murdering Nurbank's top managers Zholdas Timraliyev and Aibar Khassenov after their bodies were found close to Almaty. In 2008 he was accused in Kazakhstan of several grave crimes, including betrayal of the motherland, plotting a revolt and kidnapping (of Timraliyev and Khassenov). The ruling was made durante absentia, as Aliyev had fled to Austria and had been hiding there since spring 2007. According to Die Presse, he lives in a small town Sliema at the North-East shore of Malta now.