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No Criminal Charges Against Former Kyrgyz President

Ex-President Askar Akaev in Moscow one year after his March 2005 ouster (ITAR-TASS) BISHKEK, October 4, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- Deputy Prosecutor-General Aleksandr Neforosnykh said today that authorities have not launched any criminal proceedings against former President Askar Akaev.

But Neforosnykh added that prosecutors have opened two criminal cases against Akaev's son, Aidar. He also said a charity run by Akaev's wife, Mairam, is under investigation.

Opponents of the former president have asserted that he or family members controlled wide swathes of the Kyrgyz economy before street protests forced him to flee to Russia in March 2005.

Neforosnykh's comments, made to Kyrgyzstan's news agency, confirmed what Akaev's lawyer Galina Skripkina told reporters in Bishkek on October 3.

"In line with Article 53 of [Kyrgyzstan's] constitution, no criminal proceedings can be launched against the former president," Skripkina said, "and if there are any they must be stopped because he enjoys [criminal] immunity."

Kyrgyz Prosecutor-General Kambaraly Kongantiev said on June 30 that more than 100 legal proceedings had been launched against Akaev, his family, and his close friends.

Akaev ruled Kyrgyzstan for a decade and a half, from 1990 until March 2005.

(RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service,