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Accused Russian Spy to Remain Free

October 8, 2002

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MOSCOW (AP) _ A Siberian court has rejected a prosecutor’s request to return to custody a Russian scientist accused of spying for China, his defense lawyer said Tuesday.

Valentin Danilov was released Sept. 27 after agreeing not to leave the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk. He had been jailed since February 2001 on charges of selling state secrets to a Chinese company and of misappropriating money.

Danilov, a professor at Krasnoyarsk Technical University, has insisted that the information he provided was no longer classified and had been published in scientific journals. He also rejected the financial charges.

Danilov’s lawyer, Yelena Yevmenova, said the Krasnoyarsk regional court told her Tuesday it turned down an appeal by the prosecutor asking to send the scientist back to the pretrial detention center.

Danilov’s case is one of a series of espionage trials in recent years against Russian researchers who cooperate with foreigners _ cases that are particularly difficult for the defense since the charges, and supporting investigative materials, are secret.

The case also dovetails with Russia’s campaign to show it is complying with international demands that it prevent the export of sensitive technology. According to Russian news reports, Danilov is accused of trying to sell equipment that can model the effects of outer space on satellites.

Yevmenova said it was still unclear when the trial against her client would begin.

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