Businessman Polonsky to be deported from Cambodia to Russia

Russian businessman Polonsky, who has been arrested in Cambodia, where he has lived over the past several years, will be deported to Russia soon, although this will not happen on Saturday, sources with knowledge of the situation told Interfax. "The date and time of the departure of a plane with Polonsky on board have not yet been determined. Negotiations with the Cambodian side are continuing," one of the sources said.

A group of officials from the Russian Prosecutor General's Office and Interior Ministry has arrived in the capital Phnom Penh to escort Polonsky, whom Russia has declared internationally wanted, he said.

"In line with an agreement between the parties, this will be deportation, and it will be accomplished in the near future," another source said.

The website of the Cambodian newspaper Phnom Penh Post reported earlier that the Cambodian authorities had detained Polonsky for violating visa regulations and were in the process of drawing up the necessary documents for his deportation to Russia.

Polonsky's lawyer Slavik Brsoyan told Interfax on Saturday that his client did not have visa problems preventing him from staying in the country. "Polonsky had his visa extended by one year in December. The migration services repeatedly visited him on the island to check him. He is staying in Cambodia on legal grounds," Brsoyan said.

The businessman's lawyers have still been unable to receive a document from Cambodian authorities explaining why Polonsky was detained, Brsoyan said. "The situation is unlikely to be clarified by Monday, as there is a holiday in Cambodia. The law enforcement agencies are not giving any information," he said.

Polonsky and the people who were detained along with him are currently being held in custody, he said.

Cambodia has imposed travel restrictions on Polonsky, who is accused of violence against local sailors and holding them against their will.

The businessman was held in a Cambodian prison from December 2012 through April 2013. He was facing a three-year prison sentence but the defense team reached an agreement with the plaintiffs, who did not press charges in exchange for compensation. Yet the case remains open.

Russia is seeking Polonsky's extradition from Cambodia to hold him criminally liable in a fraud case related to the construction of the Kutuzov Mile residential complex. Polonsky has also been charged with embezzling money belonging to private investors in the Rublyovskaya Riviera residential complex.

The two criminal inquiries in relation of Polonsky have been merged into one. The investigation has found that "the fraudulent embezzlement of funds by a group of individuals inflicted material damage of over 2.3 billion rubles on 111 co-funders of real estate projects."

A Russian court ordered the businessman's arrest in absentia and put him on the international wanted list.

In April 2014, the Cambodian Supreme Court rejected the first request for Polonsky's extradition filed by Russia in October 2013, and the Russian Prosecutor General's Office held consultations with the Cambodian Justice Ministry. Based on their results, a new extradition request on the grounds of the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime was lodged with the Cambodian Justice Ministry in October 2014.

The third extradition request for Polonsky was sent by Russia to Cambodia in December 2014.

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