Investigators are ready to guarantee immunity from persecution to the wife of former Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov, Yelena Baturina, who has been summoned to Moscow for questioning over a bank fraud case, the Interior Ministry’s senior official, Pavel Lapshov said on Monday.
“According to the current legislation, Elena Baturina will have 15-days immunity [after questioning by investigators in Moscow], a period when we do not have the right to detain or take any measures against her,” Lapshov said.
In early February Baturina’s lawyer Alexander Asnis said that she cannot come to Moscow because of “the specifics of our law-enforcement system, from which anything can be expected.”
Baturina, a businesswoman who became a billionaire during her husband's tenure as mayor, is a witness in a fraud case involving the Bank of Moscow.
The case surrounds a loan of about $400 million that the Bank of Moscow gave to a company that used the money to buy 58 hectares of land near Moscow from Baturina's company at the end of 2010. The heads of the bank at the time, Andrey Borodin and his former first deputy Dmitry Akulinin are the defendants in the case.
Luzhkov who was fired from his mayoral post by President Dmitry Medvedev in 2010, earlier said that Baturina would come to Moscow for questioning if she was guaranteed the right to leave Russia afterwards.