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Prosecutors reportedly close to indicting Yeltsin family in Mabetex affair

The restored residence of the Russian president in the Kremlin. Mabetex

A report in the US magazine, Newsweek, says that magistrates in Geneva are preparing to file charges implicating the daughters of the former Russian president, Boris Yeltsin, in the Mabetex affair.

This content was published on June 12, 2000 - 14:52

A Lugano-based construction company, Mabetex, allegedly paid kickbacks to senior Russian officials in return for lucrative contracts to refurbish buildings in Moscow owned by the Kremlin.

Newsweek cites "two sources with knowledge of the investigation" as saying that Yeltsin's daughters, Tatyana Dyachenko and Yelena Okulova, are suspected of accepting bribes from Mabetex.

Switzerland has already issued an arrest warrant on charges of money laundering for Pavel Borodin, the former chief of the Kremlin property-management division. Magistrates have charged the Mabetex boss Behgjet Pacolli, with corruption.

Newsweek suggests that Yeltsin's daughters and the other Russians alleged to have benefited financially from the scandal are unlikely to have to answer the charges. Geneva prosecutors have frequently complained that their Russian counterparts are providing very little cooperation.

Last week, the Geneva Prosecutor Bernard Bertossa, issued another broadside against the Russians in an interview with the Italian newspaper, Corriere della Sera. He accused Russian prosecutors of yet again failing to provide useful information at a joint meeting last month.

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