MOSCOW, January 22 - RAPSI. Vadim Stepanov, the owner of the Tervolina group of companies which sells footwear and accessories in Russia, will be tried for embezzling 1 billion rubles ($33 million), spokesman of the Investigative Committee Vladimir Markin told RIA Novosti on Tuesday.

Stepanov is suspected of involvement in the theft of state-owned land plots in the Moscow Region assessed at over 3 billion rubles ($99 million).

The case was opened in the fall of 2008. In April 2009, Stepanov was released on bail.

The 1 billion rubles fraud case was opened over the theft of land plots with a total area of 22.8 hectares from the Odintsovo District forest fund in the Moscow Region in 2003-2004.

"Seeking to legalize [their transaction], the accomplices registered fictitious sale contracts with their relatives and acquaintances, as well as with employees from the companies they controlled. As a result, they legalized property worth a total of 749.8 million rubles ($24.75 million)," Markin added.

The article on fraud stipulates a penalty of up to 10 years in prison.

According to its website, Tervolina footwear company was established in 1992 and has stores in over 60 Russian cities.

"Today, Tervolina shoes are made at famous factories in Europe and Southeast Asia," the company states on its website.