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European deputies criticise Las Palmas judiciary in its handling of the ‘Kokorev case’

The European Parliament on September 28 heard the case of Vladimir Kokorev, a Spanish citizen of Russian and Jewish origin who has been imprisoned, together with his family, on the Canary Islands (a territory of Spain on the west coast of Africa, but still a part of European Community) since 2015

By: EBR - Posted: Monday, October 02, 2017

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”Two years in detention without specific charges with the prospect of a further two years for no good reason is an affront to all that we Europeans believe in,”stated MEP Fulvio Martusciello...
”Two years in detention without specific charges with the prospect of a further two years for no good reason is an affront to all that we Europeans believe in,”stated MEP Fulvio Martusciello...

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by Antonio W. Romero
 
The roundtable event, which was held at the European Parliament in Brussels, was organised by Fulvio Martusciello, a member of the EPP Group in the European Parliament and chairman of the Delegation for EU-Israel relations.

Titled “Justice and the rule of law in the EU – the case of Vladimir Kokorev”, the discussion was attended by MEPs of various committees, as well as lawyers, experts and journalists from Spain, Belgium, the UK, Israel and other countries.

As explained during the roundtable, 66-year-old Kokorev, together with his wife Yulia, 68, and their son Igor, were arrested in Panama in 2015. This was based on an international arrest warrant, issued by Ana Isabel de Vega Serrano of Las Palmas Court, on suspicion of having laundered money on behalf of Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the president of Equatorial Guinea.

During the roundtable, speakers discussed the unusually long detention without a trial. The fact that Kokorev has not yet been formally indicted, nor presented with evidence of any wrongdoing, was also raised.

Speakers representing Kokorev alleged there are “obscure private and political agendas behind” the case, and that it is becoming increasingly hard to understand the blatant disregard for basic human rights and due procedure of the law in EU member state Spain.

They attorneys and judicial experts criticised the judge’s decision to extend the family’s “preventive imprisonment” for another two years, despite evidence presented by the defence attesting to absolute transparency of Kokorev’s companies.

“It is not for us to decide if Mr. Kokorev is guilty or innocent of the charges against him. But what should concern us all is the fact that he, his wife and son are being denied justice and due process of law,” stated MEP Fulvio Martusciello. “Two years in detention without specific charges with the prospect of a further two years for no good reason is an affront to all that we Europeans believe in.” 

Meanwhile, a conditional release of Kokorev’s wife Yulia was announced shortly after the European Parliament’s round table was announced by the media.

Nevertheless, the European Parliament has called on the Spanish Central Judiciary Supervising Organ (Consejo General de Poder Judicial), the High Courts of Madrid (Audiencia Nacional) and the General Prosecutor Office of Spain, to remove the ‘Kokorev Case’ from the jurisdiction of Las Palmas and place it in the High Courts of Madrid (Audiencia Nacional to guarantee the rights of the defendants to due process and a fair trial.

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