MOSCOW, May 31 (RAPSI) – Russia’s former economy minister Alexey Ulyukayev, who was sentenced to 8 years in prison for taking a bribe, has been transported under guard to a penal colony to serve his punishment, the Federal Penitentiary Service’s press office has told RAPSI.
The Penitentiary Service did not specify a region where the former official was transported to.
The former minister was sentenced to 8 years in high security prison and a 130-million-ruble fine (about $2 million) on December 15, 2017. Moscow’s Zamoskvoretsky District Court held that his involvement in the bribery was proven by witnesses’ testimony and other examined evidence. The defendant’s words about innocence were regarded as attempt to evade criminal liability. Later, the Moscow City Court upheld the prison term for Ulyukayev despite slightly changing the sentence itself.
Ulyukayev was arrested on November 14, 2016, when leaving the office of Rosneft oil company. The Federal Security Service’s (FSB) officers found a bag holding $2 million in cash in his official car. He was charged with extortion a grand bribe. According to the Investigative Committee, he threatened to create obtrusions for Rosneft with the use of his position.
Ulyukayev stated that the case was fabricated. The defendant noted that there was a provocation, orchestrated by FSB and that there was no sound evidence in the case, aside from testimony provided by Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin.
President Vladimir Putin relieved Ulyukayev of his post because of loss of trust on November 15, 2016.