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Former Russian nuclear minister freed to await fraud trial

[JURIST] The Russian Supreme Court Friday ordered the release of former Russian nuclear energy minister Yevgeny Adamov [Kommersant profile; JURIST news archive] pending trial for allegedly diverting funds equivalent to hundreds of millions of dollars to his personal use and improperly setting up private projects. Adamov, who is said to have suffered heart problems [JURIST report] while in detention, faces a maximum prison term of 10 years. A Moscow court denied an earlier bail petition [JURIST report] from Adamov in January. It later extended his detention until June, prompting his appeal to the Supreme Court [JURIST report]. Russian news agencies say his trial could begin next month.

Adamov was arrested [JURIST report] in Switzerland last year on a US warrant alleging that he diverted $9 million [JURIST report] given to Russia by the US Department of Energy [official website] for nuclear security improvement to various improvement projects in US firms he controls. He was extradited to Russia [JURIST report] last December after a series of legal battles [JURIST report] between the US and Russia, which insisted that he be tried for crimes at home. AP has more.

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