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    OVER 300 CRIMINAL CASES INITIATED IN CHECHNYA IN 2003 IN RELATION TO OIL PRODUCTS ILLEGAL TURNOVER

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    MOSCOW, January 8 (RIA Novosti) - Over 300 criminal cases have been launched in relation to illegal turnover of oil products in Chechnya in 2003, Chechen interior minister Alu Alkhanov reports.

    In his words, "to provide security of oil and gas complex facilities, prevent and block the facts of illegal production, refining, transportation and sale of oil and oil products, a whole number of measures are being taken. As a result, over 1,000 vehicles involved with illegal transportation of oil products have been detained." The minister said 362 criminal cases have been launched in connection with illegal oil turnover. Four licenses on processing and selling lubricants have been annulled. "The fact that fewer makeshift oil products are sold in Chechnya is thanks to the police," Alkhanov believes.

    At the same time, the Chechen interior minister said there certain drawbacks remain in police units' work on this issue.

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