The investigation committee completed the investigation of the criminal case against the former head of Nizhny Novgorod and the vice-speaker of the legislative assembly of the Nizhny Novgorod region Oleg Sorokin. Politics is accused of taking a bribe related to the largest land auction in the city for 453 hectares of land for housing development, and kidnapping in 2004 a person. Experts believe that Oleg Sorokin and his seven lawyers will not rush to get acquainted with the case materials, because in April 2019 the statute of limitations expires on a particularly serious accusation of kidnapping.
A preliminary investigation into the criminal case against Oleg Sorokin, former deputy speaker of the Nizhny Novgorod parliament, who was arrested in December 2017, was completed in early May. He is charged with taking a bribe "in the form of illegal provision of services of a property nature". According to the investigation, in 2013, on the instructions of Oleg Sorokin, his former friend Mansur Sadekov was to transfer $ 1 million to Vektron to prevent Ingradstroy (controlled by his wife Oleg Sorokin Elada Nagornaya and his business partners) to win a tender for lease 453 hectares of land for housing development. The second episode of the accusation concerns the participation of Oleg Sorokin in the so-called operational experiment of police officers of the regional police department. In December 2003, businessman Oleg Sorokin was assassinated. Investigating it, the men of the threat on the machine of Oleg Sorokin were forcibly taken to the forest by Alexander Novoselov, the guard of the then vice-speaker of the Nizhny Novgorod Legislative Assembly, Mikhail Dikin. Alexander Novoselov claimed that in the forest was Oleg Sorokin himself, who took an ax from the trunk and threatened to "cut off his leg," and the militiamen beat him and strangled him with a packet. The frightened Alexander Novosyolov testified against his boss, who was sentenced to 16 years.
Yesterday, in court to extend the detention period, Oleg Sorokin and four of his lawyers tried to refute the investigator's interpretation of the events of 2004 and 2013 as grave crimes. In the case of Alexander Novoselov, the prisoner Sorokin said that the testimony of a security guard, previously "convicted of perjury and telephone terrorism," can not be taken as true. He said that he provided his police officers with an official request to the police in the investigation of the attempt on his life, not knowing what his car will be used for. He noted that the European Court of Human Rights, which awarded compensation to Alexander Novoselov, "did not question the legality of the operational experiment." His lawyer, Sergey Lebedev, recalled that for 14 years Nizhny Novgorod law enforcement agencies and courts had not seen any crime in "moving Novoselov from point A to point B". The argument of the investigators was defended by Lebedev as procedural cheating.
In the case of a competition for 453 hectares of land, the lawyer believes, the investigation changed the concepts, "turning commercial bribery into a bribe." The lawyers cited a transcript of the hidden audio recordings of Vektron representatives' talks with Oleg Sorokin in Cannes, from which it followed that he suggested that representatives of the company officially enter the auction and invest in Nizhny Novgorod.
Also the defense and Oleg Sorokin criticized the formal reasons for the arrest. They were especially indignant at the refusal of the investigation to seize his passport with an open visa. "I need to burn this passport in public in the hall, or what?" - complained the accused, trying to convince the court that if a person decides to flee the country, he is unlikely to cross the border legally. Voluntary addition of deputy powers to Oleg Sorokin also did not help. CID investigator Yevgeny Lagunov claimed that the "former" deputy chairman of the Legislative Assembly was still a significant person in the city and could influence the investigation, and his wife used a car with diplomatic numbers (Elada Nagornaya - Honorary Consul of Hungary in Nizhny Novgorod). As a result, the court extended the arrest to Oleg Sorokin until August 1, finding that the accused politician who used the business jet could flee abroad to his wife and children or to prevent the investigation.
In the opinion of lawyers who follow this criminal case, considering that the statute of limitations on the serious accusation of kidnapping expires in April 2019, it is unlikely that the accused Sorokin and the two former operatives Evgeni Voronin and Roman Markeev will rush to get acquainted with the case.