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AST Group Office Searched

The office of company Polimiks-Tsentr, allegedly part of the AST Group owned by billionaire Telman Ismailov, was searched by investigators Tuesday in connection with the alleged nonpayment of 1.5 billion rubles ($51 million) in taxes, RIA-Novosti reported.

Investigative Committee head Vladimir Markin told the news agency that Polimiks-Tsentr had submitted a falsified income declaration that allowed it to avoid paying 1.5 billion rubles in taxes. Investigators searched the company's office in an attempt to find evidence of the crime, Markin said.

Ismailov told Ekho Moskvy radio Tuesday that the company in question did not in fact belong to his AST Group, a diversified holding that includes a publishing house, a tour company, a telecom division and other companies.

(MT)

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