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Russia prosecutors lay new coup plot charges againt billionaire Berezovsky: lawyer

[JURIST] The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB) [official website, in Russian] has charged Russian billionaire Boris Berezovsky [JURIST news archive] on suspicion of plotting a violent coup against President Vladimir Putin, Berezovsky's lawyer said Monday. The charge is related to an interview [Guardian report] Berezovsky gave to Britain's Guardian newspaper in April in which he said he was planning to forcefully remove Putin from power. In a statement [text] released after the interview, Berezovsky, now living in the UK after being granted asylum, insisted that he does not support violence.

Berezovsky has been previously charged in Russia with plotting a coup [JURIST report] against Putin. In May, the Russian Office of the Prosecutor-General [official website, in Russian] dismissed suggestions [JURIST report] made by a Russian lawmaker that Russian businessman Andrei Lugovoy could be extradited to the UK in exchange for Berezovsky. Lugovoy is wanted in the UK in connection with the polonium poisoning death of former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko. Russian authorities have said that the Russian constitution forbids the extradition of its citizens [MFA statement] for alleged crimes committed abroad. Reuters has more.

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