Duma to consider stripping oppositionist Gudkov's political power Friday
MOSCOW, September 13 - RAPSI. The State Duma Council will consider stripping A Just Russia party member Gennady Gudkov's parliamentary seat, Deputy Head of the Liberal Democratic Party faction Yaroslav Nilov told RIA Novosti.
Gudkov did not attend the council meeting.
Prosecutor General Yuri Chaika submitted a request to the State Duma for the premature termination of Gudkov's authorities.
United Russia and the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia have voted in favor of stripping Gudkov of his mandate; the number of their votes (238 and 56, respectively) is sufficient to pass the resolution. A Just Russia and the Communist Party cast 64 and 92 votes against, respectively.
The opposition has submitted an inquiry to the Constitutional Court to establish whether it is lawful to deprive a deputy's mandate by an ordinary vote. But the State Duma commission has said that taking the matter to court will not stop the Duma from looking into it.
On Monday, the State Duma Commission for Control over the Credibility of State Deputies' Incomes and Expenses confirmed that A Just Russia party State Duma deputy Gennady Gudkov is involved in business activities.
After looking into all the material provided by the Investigative Committee, the Commission concluded that there is sufficient information regarding Gudkov's breach of State Duma deputy legislation and enough grounds to have his powers stripped from him.
The Commission will submit its report to the State Duma chairman, who will raise the issue with the State Duma council.
According to current Russian legislation, deputies are not permitted to be involved in business.
Previously, Alexander Shchukin, head of the Investigative Committee's Investigative Department, disclosed that Gudkov was involved in managing a construction company in Bulgaria.
In June, it was revealed that investigators were carrying out an inspection upon the application of Bulgarian citizen Ivaylo Zartov on Gudkov's purported investments in a Bulgarian firm and his alleged tax evasion in Russia. Gudkov said that Zartov had previous convictions in the Czech Republic and Bulgaria and was just trying to settle accounts with him.
Additionally, the Interior Ministry looked into the security businesses owned by the Gudkov family and found that a number of violations had been committed here too. Gudkov believes these investigations are connected to his political opposition.
As most seats are held by United Russia party members, Gudkov sent letters to 50 United Russia deputies, asking them to vote against stripping him of his mandate.