Kazakh side determined to pursue arrest of Ablyazov’s property abroad

Astana. May 14. Interfax-Kazakhstan

The law enforcement agencies of Kazakhstan intend to identify the property that the ex-chief of BTA Bank, Mukhtar Ablyazov, and his accomplices have in CIS countries and abroad and pursue its further arrest, said Saparbek Nurpeisov, an official representative of the Prosecutor General’s office.

“The main goal of the prosecutor’s office is definite and clear: we need to identify all illegal activities committed by Mukhtar Ablyazov involving or not involving property. All such assets should be returned to the bank,” Nurpeisov told Interfax-Kazakhstan in an interview on Thursday.

He said that once Ablyazov’s property was found abroad the Prosecutor General’s office would take steps as required to seek its arrest.

As reported, starting February 2, 2009 SamrukKazyna National Welfare Fund gained control over BTA Bank. One by one, all managers of the banks were relieved of their duties, including Mukhtar Ablyazov, the chair of the board of directors of BTA Bank. Soon after their dismissal, Ablyazov, Zhaksylyk Zharimbetov, the former first deputy chair of the bank’s managing board, and Roman Solodchenko, the chair of the management board, left Kazakhstan in fear of criminal prosecutions. They all were charged with embezzlement. Besides, Ablyazov was charged with masterminding an organized criminal group that existed in the bank, according to the investigators.

In the first half of 2008 one of Kazakhstan’s backbones banks, BTA Bank, was ranked 7th by assets among the CIS banks and 1st among the Kazakh commercial banks according to the Interfax-1000: CIS Banks ranking prepared by the Interfax Center of Economic Analysis.