World News

Russia puts out arrest warrant for ex-banker in embezzlement case

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian authorities have issued an international arrest warrant for Boris Mints, a prominent businessman and the former co-owner of the Otkritie Group, on suspicion of embezzlement, a court in Moscow said on Thursday.

Mints and his family moved to London in 2018, Russian media have reported, a year after Otkritie bank, once Russia’s largest private lender, was bailed out by the central bank.

Otkritie’s current CEO Mikhail Zadornov said in December 2018 that former management figures were the subject of a criminal investigation.

Investigators will ask a court on Friday to arrest Mints and two of his sons, Alexander and Dmitry, in absentia, TASS news agency cited the court as saying.

A spokesperson for Mints said the case appeared to be an attempt to intimidate him and his family.

“The charges that have purportedly been brought in Russia against Mr Mints and his sons Alexander and Dmitry are utterly baseless, suspiciously timed, and they dispute them in full,” the spokesperson said.

Mints and his family owned assets including the commercial real estate company 01 Properties and the Budushchee financial group that controlled an array of large private pension funds.

Mints was worth $1.3 billion in 2017, according to Forbes’ list of billionaires, but he dropped off that list the following year.

(Reporting by Tatiana Voronova and Maria Tsvetkova; Writing by Tom Balmforth; Editing by John Stonestreet and Hugh Lawson)