Russia Scores Temporary Extradition Win Against US On Alexander Vinnik: ReportOctober 11, 2017 4:28 pm
A panel of judges ruled Wednesday a Russian cybercrime suspect arrested in Greece on money-laundering charges this past summer should be extradited to Russia and not the United States as a previous panel had ruled, The Associated Press reported.
Last week, a different judicial panel in the Greek city of Thessaloniki agreed to extradite Alexander Vinnik to the United States to face charges he allegedly laundered $4 billion worth of bitcoins through BTC-e, one of the world’s largest digital currency exchanges, which he allegedly operated, the report said.
On Wednesday, a different panel of judges accepted a Russian extradition request, which followed the initial U.S. one. In Russia, Vinnik is accused of a 667,000-ruble ($11,500) fraud.
Greece’s justice minister will be called upon to render a final decision on where he is extradicted once Vinnik, 37, has exhausted the process of appealing his extradition to the U.S., the AP reported.
Vinnik denies both country’s charges, but said he wants to be tried in Russia, the report said. He has appealed his U.S. extradition, and Greece’s Supreme Court is expected to rule on that appeal in coming weeks.
The U.S. Justice Department says Vinnik has been indicted by a Northern District of California grand jury on charges including money laundering, conspiracy to commit money laundering and engaging in unlawful monetary transactions, the AP reported.
If proven, the charges carry maximum sentences of up to 20 years in prison.
Following a U.S. request, Vinnik was arrested in July while on holiday with his family in the Halkidiki area of northern Greece, which is popular with Russian tourists.
– WN.com, Jack Durschlag