Russian investigators summon Putin critic again
Posted Monday, July 30 2012 at 18:05
Alexei Navalny, an anti-corruption crusader and Russian opposition leader being probed over losses at a state-owned firm, is to appear before investigators Tuesday to face possible charges.
Investigators earlier this month reopened a two-year-old probe against Navalny after Russia's top investigator Alexander Bastrykin dressed down his subordinates for closing it earlier this year.
Navalny had been told to appear before investigators Monday, but said after his visit to the Investigative Committee that he had been told to come back the following day.
"Something strange has just happened because I was told that a decision had been taken not to charge me today," he told reporters outside the Investigative Committee.
"I was summoned to appear at 11:00 am tomorrow (0700 GMT)."
According to investigators, forestry firm KirovLes company sustained losses of more than a million rubles ($30,900) between April and August 2009 due to the actions of Navalny, who at the time was an adviser to the Kirov region's governor.
Navalny has denied the charges.
The probe against Navalny represents one of the most serious legal challenges yet for the 36-year-old charismatic lawyer who has twice spent short stints in jail for his role in protests against President Vladimir Putin.
The opposition leader looked composed and confident as he addressed reporters following his appearance before the investigators.
"I cannot say that I am feeling great joy but I have no fear," he said.
Opposition activists and rights campaigners accuse the Kremlin of a ruthless crackdown on the motley opposition movement since Putin's return for a historic third term in May.