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Interview with Aleksandr Dobrovinsky

Aleksandr Dobrovinsky, a practicing lawyer and law expert, commented on the extradition procedures in different countries and the legal aspects of the particular case of Andrey Lugovoy.

Russia Today: How strong do you think is Russia's defence when it says that the constitution says that it cannot extradite criminals? Why would a country adopt such a law?

A.D.: You know, the French would say the law is “tres elastique” – it's very flexible. Sometimes it is implemented according to a decision by the government, and people could be sent abroad. Sometimes this position can be very strong. The best example is Israel. We have several examples when Israel protected its citizens and a few examples when citizens of Israel were sent – in particular to Russia. It's happened four or five years ago when a criminal was sent in Russia, and I think this was according to the decision of the government. But it's true: the constitution says that our law protects our citizens. Why not? It's practically the same all around the world.

RT: In practical terms, would it be easy for the British investigators to bring a case against Lugovoy in a Russian court?

A.D.: It's actually a good question. First of all, the British would not accept it because legal systems are very different in Britain and in our country. The procedure in the court is different. The British would have to learn how it happens in Russia and then adopt it to their own law – they will never go for that. The second point is – that's my own opinion – they are afraid to go to the Russian court because they don't know what would happen here during the hearings.