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Russian Businessman Gets Prison Term After Returning From Exile


Business ombudsman Boris Titov announced last month he had stopped his campaign due to a failure by prosecutors to guarantee that the businessmen would not be arrested on their return.

ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia -- A court in Russia has sentenced Russian businessman Andrei Kakovkin to prison on embezzlement charges more than three years after he returned to his homeland from abroad as part of a campaign to repatriate foreign-based Russian businesspeople.

A court in the southern city of Rostov-on-Don on August 12 sentenced Kakovkin to 4 1/2 years in prison after finding him guilty of embezzling $400,000 in 2015.

In 2019, Kakovkin was handed a three-year prison term in a separate embezzlement case before the sentence was replaced by a suspended term.

He has since remained in custody as investigations into other alleged crimes continued.

Kakovkin was the first person who used business ombudsman Boris Titov's campaign to bring back foreign-based Russian businesspeople from abroad, and returned to Russia from London in February 2018.

Twelve other Russian businessmen followed suit.

Titov said at the time that exiled businessmen wanted in Russia for alleged financial and other crimes could return to the country and would not be arrested if they cooperated with investigators.

Titov announced last month he had stopped his campaign due to a failure by the Prosecutor-General's Office to guarantee that the businessmen would not be arrested on their return.

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