[JURIST] The United Kingdom cannot legally continue to provide political asylum to Russian billionaire and alleged coup plotter Boris Berezovsky [MosNews profile] and refuse to extradite him, the chairman of the Russian State Duma's Civil, Criminal, Arbitration and Procedural Law Committee said Monday. Berezovsky, who has been charged with plotting a coup against Russian President Vladimir Putin [official website], notoriously suggested earlier this month that the current Russian government can only be changed by force. The comments prompted the Office of the Russian Prosecutor General [official website, in Russian] to submit a request [JURIST report] to the UK Home Office [official website] to revoke Berezovsky's asylum status.
British police began an investigation Friday into whether Berezovsky's comments violated UK law after the Russian government renewed its call for Berezovsky's extradition [JURIST report]. The Russian prosecutor general's office suspended [JURIST report] its own investigation of Berezovsky on charges of plotting a coup against Putin in January. Berezovsky, who fled to the UK in 2000, obtained political asylum in 2003 and is currently living in London. RIA Novosti has more.