Poland prolongs arrest of Russian gambling scam suspect

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A Polish court Wednesday prolonged by 40 days the detention of a former Russian prosecutor wanted in his country on corruption allegations, following a request from Moscow.

Russian authorities will now be able to proceed with a formal extradition request for Alexander Ignatenko, on which Poland's justice minister will have the final word.

"Russian authorities have until February 9 to submit an official extradition request to Poland," Bogdan Kijak, a spokesman for the court in the southern Polish city of Nowy Sacz told AFP.

Polish security services detained Ignatenko -- whom Moscow suspects was involved in a network of illegal casinos -- late Sunday when they pulled him over on a road near the southern mountain resort of Zakopane.

In May, Russian authorities issued an arrest warrant for Ignatenko who had been fired from his post as a prosecutor in April after a network of illegal casinos had been uncovered in the Moscow region in mid-February.

Russian investigators allege senior police and prosecutors turned a blind eye to the illegal casinos which made between five to ten million dollars (3.8-7.7 million euros) a month.

© 2012 AFP

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