Former police officer suspected of organizing illegal casinos
- Five suspects in notorious illegal casinos case remain in custody
- Former prosecutor involved in gambling scandal faces no threats - official
- High-ranking police officer may be involved in illegal gambling racket
- New gambling network revealed in Moscow Region
- Hearing on extradition of Russian prosecutor in illegal casino case begins
MOSCOW, June 15 - RAPSI. An ex-police officer discharged in 2007 helped organize the notorious illegal casino network in the Moscow region, RIA Novosti reports.
Yesterday, law enforcement authorities reported that they closed overnight six casinos that had been operating for three months.
Proceeds from each of their unlawful activities reached 6 million rubles ($184,000) monthly. The former police officer was among the detained suspects.
The high-profile illegal casino scandal in the Moscow region came to light in 2011 and caused a major public uproar.
Businessman Ivan Nazarov allegedly operated illegal casinos in 15 towns across the region. According to law enforcement authorities, several high-ranking officials from the prosecutor's offices and the federal Interior Ministry were involved in the operation, which generated between $5 million and $10 million in monthly revenue.
Deputy Moscow Region Prosecutor Alexander Ignatenko was the most high-ranking of the suspects. He was arrested on January 1 at the Zakopane ski resort. In February, the court ruled that his extradition was permissible and extended his custody until June 9. An appeals court upheld the judgment in March. The Nowy Sacz District Court extended his arrest until October 9. Justice Minister Jaroslaw Gowin is now due to take the final decision regarding Ignatenko's extradition.