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Courts stop over 5,000 Moscow debtors from leaving country

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MOSCOW, October 8 (RIA Novosti) - Court officials have stopped around 5,500 Muscovite debtors from leaving the country since the beginning of the year, the head of the Moscow department of the Federal Service of Court Bailiffs said on Wednesday.

"In the first nine months of 2008, court enforcement officers in Moscow stopped 5,448 debtors from leaving the country. For the same period last year, 471 people were stopped," Ferdauns Yusupov said.

He said that preventing people from skipping the country was an extreme measure and that overall over 428,000 people in Moscow had ended up in court for non-payment of their debts this year.

"Make your own mind up if 5,500 is a large or small number," he commented.

He also said that although the Moscow courts had seen a 40% rise year on year in non-payment cases, the capital was still below the average compared to the regions.

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