Alleged Criminal on Russia Ballot
MOSCOW (AP) _ Ultranationalist politician Vladimir Zhirinovsky said Saturday that an industrialist wanted by Russian police would occupy second place on his Liberal-Democratic Party’s ballot in December parliamentary elections.
The industrialist is Anatoly Bykov, the head of the huge Krasnoyarsk Aluminum Plant in Siberia. Police opened a criminal case against Bykov in April, and later put out an arrest warrant for him. He is accused of financial crimes, including money laundering, and has taken refuge abroad.
Alexei Mitrofanov, a leader of Zhirinovsky’s party, said that Bykov had been put on the ballot as ``a rocket against (Krasnoyarsk Governor Alexander) Lebed,″ the Interfax news agency reported.
Bykov had been a close ally of Lebed, a retired general and former national security adviser, and reportedly helped finance his campaign for Krasnoyarsk governor last year. But Lebed and Bykov started feuding after Bykov moved to take over several other regional factories and Lebed opposed the plans.
Bykov contends the criminal case against him is politically motivated.