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Moscow court extends arrest of research center head

MOSCOW, July 14 (RIA Novosti) - A Moscow court extended Friday the pre-trial detention of the head of the export arm of a leading Russian space and aerospace research institute, charged with divulging information on sensitive technologies to China, until October 9.

Igor Reshetin, head of Tsniimash-Export, a part of Russia's Central Research Institute for Machine Building, also faces charges of embezzling 30 million rubles (about $1 million) through a well-organized scheme involving fake firms registered on lost of forged passports

"The Lefortovo District Court extended the term of pre-trial confinement for our defendant at prosecutors' request," said Anatoly Yablokov, acting for Igor Reshetin.

The defense lawyer said there were no legal grounds for further confinement. "Prosecutors continue providing unsubstantiated evidence," said Yablokov, who has already appealed the decision with the higher Moscow City Court.

Due to the seriousness of the charges and attempts to pressure the sides involved in the criminal proceedings, the Lefortovo District Court ruled in November 2005 to arrest Reshetin along with his two colleagues Sergei Tverdokhlebov and Alexander Rozhkin.

The prosecution earlier said Reshetin might be able to hide from investigations, influence witnesses, and continue his criminal activities.

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