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Politics or Revenge? Billionaire Gleb Fetisov is Arrested

Published: March 3, 2014 (Issue # 1799)



  • Gleb Fetisov is suspected of fraud.
    Photo: Vedomosti

A Moscow court has arrested billionaire political leader Gleb Fetisov, weeks after he ramped up his political ambitions by partnering up with prominent opposition figures and launching a new political party.

A fellow leader of the party suggested that the arrest was retaliation by influential private depositors who lost millions of dollars when a bank formerly owned by Fetisov was shut down by the regulator in January.

Related: Billionaire Gleb Fetisov’s Vision in Green

Worth $1.9 billion, Fetisov is one of the richest people to have ever found themselves behind bars in Russia's post-Soviet history, after former Yukos chief Mikhail Khodorkovsky and media magnate Vladimir Gusinsky. He is now the only billionaire at the helm of a Russian political party, following Mikhail Prokhorov's recent handover of leadership of the Civil Platform to his sister.

The Basmanny Court on Friday ruled to arrest Fetisov for a period ending April 20, hours after Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin announced the billionaire's detention. Fetisov is suspected of fraud at Moi Bank, which he sold in December, Markin said.

A Fetisov aide denied any wrongdoing by the businessman and attributed his prosecution to the recent advances in Fetisov's political career, including his banding together with a prominent Kremlin critic to launch a new party.

Related: Gudkovs Aim to Consolidate Opposition Parties

"All that was done to him suggests reprisal or revenge for his political activity," the party said in a statement following Fetisov's detention at a Moscow airport, as he returned from a foreign location where he underwent medical treatment.

In January, Fetisov stepped up his independent political profile by joining forces with a vocal detractor of the government, Gennady Gudkov, and merging their parties to create the People's Political Party Green and Social Democratic Alliance. They co-chair the new political force.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Sept. 20


Starting on Sept. 18 and ending tomorrow is the Extreme Fantasy Wakeboarding Festival in Sunpark by Sredny Suzdalskoye lake in the Ozerki region of the city.


Those after something more laid back can instead head to Jazz and Wine night at TerraVino with legendary jazz guitarist Ildar Kazahanov. 12/14 Admiralteyskaya Emb.



Sunday, Sept. 21


Learn more about African culture and get some exercise during today’s “Djembe and Vuvuzela,” a bike ride starting in Palace Square that includes several stops where riders can listen to the music of Africa or watch short films about the continent. The riders plan to set off at 4 p.m. and all you need to join is a set of wheels.



Monday, Sept. 22


Do you love puppetry? If so, then be sure to go to BTK-Fest, a five-day festival that starts on Sept. 19 celebrating the art. Contemporaries from France, Belgium, the U.K. and other countries will join Russian artists to put on theatrical performances involving a variety of themes, materials and eras. Workshops and meetings are also scheduled for a chance to discuss the artistic medium in further depth.



Tuesday, Sept. 23


Marina Suhih, Director of the External Communications Department at Rostelecom North-West, and Yana Donskaya, HR Director for Northern Capital Gateway are just some of the confirmed participants of today’s round table discussion on “Interaction with Trade Unions” being hosted by SPIBA. Confirm your attendance with SPIBA by Sept. 22.


Kino Expo 2014, an international film industry convention, will be at LenExpo from today until Sept. 26. The third largest exhibition of film equipment in the world, the expo focuses on not only Russia but former Soviet republics as well.



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