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Russian Jewelry Retailer Chief Arrested For Smuggling

Altyn Deputy Chairwoman Anatonina Babosyuk hides her face as she is escorted to Moscow's Lefortovo court on October 9.
MOSCOW -- Moscow police have arrested the general director of the Altyn jewelry company, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

The arrest of Valentina Shadrina was initiated by Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) after a warrant was issued by Moscow's Lefortovo court.

Shadrina is suspected of smuggling precious stones and jewelry.

The Altyn company was established in Kazakhstan in the 1990s and its jewelry factories and gold-selling networks operate in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Turkey, China, and the United Arab Emirates.

It is very popular among customers for its low prices.

Police searched Altyn stores and offices in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Novosibirsk, and Omsk and questioned employees on October 7.

Shadrina could sentenced to up to 12 years in prison if found guilty of the charges.