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A Vienna court on Tuesday granted a request to extradite influential Ukrainian oligarch Dmitry Firtash to the US over bribery charges, setting the stage for a possible trial on American soil that could rattle influential politicians and businessmen stretching from Kiev, to Moscow and Washington.
A former partner of Russia’s Gazprom in the multibillion-dollar regional natural gas trade, Mr Firtash has been exiled in Austria since early 2014 where his lawyers have contested a US Department of Justice request to extradite him over alleged bribery involving titanium dealings in India.
In prior years, Mr Firtash reportedly pursued property dealings in the US with the assistance of Paul Manafort, who stepped down as chief of Donald Trump’s election campaign amid mounting questions over his ties to Ukrainian-Russian businessmen and politicians.
Tuesday’s Vienna ruling reversed a court ruling from last year that turned down the US extradition request on grounds of it being politically-motivated.