15 Feb 2018 19:49

List of businessmen wanting to return to Russia growing - business ombudsman

MOSCOW. Feb 15 (Interfax) - The number of businessmen, who consider themselves to be prosecuted in Russia unfairly and wish to return to the home country, is rising, business ombudsman Boris Titov said.

"More people have joined the list. A similar request was recently received from a businessman in Greece... They want to return, and we will be helping them in every possible way. They are patriots, but they don't want to go to jail. They need some guarantees," Titov said on Thursday, responding to a question posed by Interfax.

The list submitted earlier to the presidential administration contains 17 names, he said. Some suspects are Britain, others in Northern Cyprus, Austria or Greece, he said.

Before adding new names to the list, the ombudsman's office carries out checks. "As for the list, it has been checked. Anyway, each one of them has either an administrative offence or a business dispute, which are not be considered in a criminal procedure," Titov said, noting that "not all those on the list are swindlers, as some media outlets write."

On February 4 Titov wrote on Facebook that he had sent the president a list of businessmen who fled to the UK to escape Russian justice, but now wanted to come back.

Later Titov's office submitted a list of 16 Russian businessmen willing to return to Russia on certain terms.

On February 5 the ombudsman's office told Interfax that Titov had written to the head state, setting out the gist of the requests he received from a group of Russian businessmen who "have to live in the UK because of what they consider to be their unjustified criminal prosecution by Russian law enforcement bodies."

Setting out their requests on 80 pages, the businessmen pointed out that they were outside Russia involuntarily, and wanted to return and develop national economy.

On February 7 the Russian president's press secretary Dmitry Peskov confirmed that the Kremlin had received Titov's list and would examine it together with security agencies.