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Former Russia nuclear minister sentenced to over five years in corruption scheme

[JURIST] Former Russian Atomic Energy Minister Yevgeny Adamov [Kommersant profile, JURIST news archive] was sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison by Moscow's Zamoskvoretsky District Court Wednesday, after being convicted on charges of fraud and abuse of office [JURIST report] earlier in the week. He was convicted for his involvement in a corruption scheme which misappropriated $31 million in US aid designated to upgrade unsafe Russian RBMK nuclear reactors [GlobalSecurity backgrounder]. Adamov, who continues to assert his innocence and faced a possible nine-year sentence, has indicated he will appeal the decision.

Adamov was arrested [JURIST report] in Switzerland in 2005 on a US warrant on charges of fraud and money laundering; also implicated was Russian nuclear engineer Mark M. Kaushansky. Despite repeated US extradition requests, the Swiss Supreme Court ruled that Adamov should be tried in Russia [JURIST report] because he is a Russian citizen and his crimes were allegedly committed in Russia. In August 2006, Adamov's case was thrown out due to factual errors in court filings [JURIST report]; the latest proceedings began in April 2007. Kaushansky, who immigrated to the United States in 1979, was extradited to the US and was sentenced to 15 months in prison [JURIST report] last June. AP has more.

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