2020.01.06 17:40

Spying suspect to remain in custody after 480 days in solitary confinement

BNS 2020.01.06 17:40

The Lithuanian Court of Appeal dismissed on Monday an appeal by Algirdas Paleckis, a Lithuanian politician suspected of spying for Russia, against a lower court's decision to remand him in custody for another three months.

The former leader of the Socialist People's Front, along with an unidentified "network of persons," is suspected of illegally gathering information on officials and judges involved in the January 1991 Soviet crackdown case, and other data for Russia.

Algis Petrulis, the suspect's lawyer, said the higher court had been requested to lift the custodial measure of restraint, which he described as "excessive".

Paleckis has been kept in solitary confinement for 480 days now, according to the lawyer.

Last month, Kaunas Regional Court extended the remand period because Paleckis, who has been held in custody since his arrest in October 2018, is considered a flight risk.

The Prosecutor General's Office expects to conclude the pre-trial investigation by spring. She said the investigation had taken a long time due to large volumes of case materials, including electronic storage devices and thousands of emails, according to Vilma Vidugirienė from the Prosecutor General's Office

The prosecutor gave no further information about the investigation on Monday.

Paleckis denies any wrongdoing.