SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 21 June 2021, Monday | النسخة العربية

Russian anti-Kremlin ex-lawmaker says criminal case opened against him

Russian authorities have opened a criminal case against Gennady Gudkov, a former Russian MP and Kremlin critic who lives abroad, over ammunition found at his apartment, he announced on Thursday.

The pistol ammunition was found in a safe during a police search of Gudkov’s flat in Russia over an unrelated criminal case this week. The 64-year-old noted that the ammunition was an award he received in 2005 and that the police had been earlier informed about it.

There was no official confirmation of the criminal case from law enforcement.

The action comes amid a wide crackdown on the Kremlin’s political opponents. Gudkov, who lives in European Union member state Bulgaria, accused authorities of opening the case to prevent him from returning to Russia.

His son, Dmitry Gudkov, who is a prominent opposition politician, was arrested in Moscow on Tuesday over an allegedly unpaid debt on a rented property dating from several years ago. His father said his son had nothing to do with that debt.

A court in Moscow had been expected on Thursday to consider the terms of pre-trial custody for Dmitry. Nonetheless, no hearing had started by early evening and he was slated to be freed from custody at 1640 GMT unless it took place, according to his lawyer.