MINSK, Sept 26 (Reuters) - The head of Russian potash producer Uralkali OAO, arrested last month while visiting Belarus, has been moved to house arrest in Minsk, a lawyer said on Thursday.
Uralkali CEO Vladislav Baumgertner had been in a KGB prison in Minsk for nearly a month, facing up to 10 years in jail on charges of abuse of office, after the company withdrew from a sales partnership with state-owned miner Belaruskali.
“He was transferred to a house arrest yesterday,” Dmitry Goryachko, Baumgertner’s lawyer, told Reuters.
Russia said last week that it expected Belarus to hand over Baumgertner soon.
Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko has said he is ready to repatriate Baumgertner, but wants a change of ownership in Uralkali that would restore strong commercial links with Belarus.
On Wednesday, Bloomberg reported that Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov’s investment vehicle Onexim has joined a list potential bidders for a stake in Uralkali after China’s sovereign wealth fund, China Investment Corp, acquired a 12.5 percent stake in the company on Tuesday.