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Russian ex-minister Ulyukayev gets eight years for bribery

A Moscow court has sentenced Russia’s former Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev to eight years in a harsh-regime prison for bribery.

He was also fined 130m roubles ($2.2m; £1.6m). He is the first minister to stand trial in Russia’s recent history.

Ulyukayev, 61, was arrested in 2016, accused of trying to extort $2m from state oil firm Rosneft to approve its purchase of another oil firm.

He was accused by the Rosneft boss, who is close to President Vladimir Putin.

Rosneft boss Igor Sechin was asked to testify but did not turn up.

It was a security service sting operation involving Mr Sechin last November that put Mr Ulyukayev in the dock.

Ulyukayev denied the charges and alleged he was framed.

The verdict read out by the judge said Ulyukayev had “made use of his position in order to demand from Rosneft chief Sechin a bribe, in exchange for giving approval” for the purchase of state-owned Bashneft.

“At the same time he told Sechin he would in future obstruct the company’s activities if it rebuffed him,” the verdict added.

Oleg Feoktistov, a former secret service officer …..



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