A French court in Chambéry has decided to release Ukrainian billionaire Kostyantyn Zhevaho on bail, Reuters reported on Jan. 5.
The court agreed to release Zhevaho on bail of 1 million euros. Now the Ukrainian billionaire cannot leave France, must hand in his two passports to the authorities, report to the local police three times a week, and respond to phone calls from the police.
Initially, the court was to hold a hearing on the extradition case on Jan. 5. However, both the prosecutor and Zhevaho's lawyers said they needed more time to prepare, to which the judges agreed, setting Jan. 19 as the new date.
Thus, the court postponed for two weeks the date of the hearing on the extradition of Zhevaho to Ukraine.
The detention of Kostyantyn Zhevaho in one of the top French Alpine skiing resorts, Courchevel, was reported on Dec. 28, 2022.
Zhevaho was detained over embezzlement of $113 million from the now defunct Ukrainian commercial bank Finance and Credit, of which the businessman was a shareholder. The bank’s license was withdrawn by the National Bank of Ukraine, the country’s central bank, in 2015, and its assets liquidated.
Earlier, the court in the French city of Chambery confined Zhevaho to extradition arrest. Zhevaho was to be held in custody for the next 40 days while French law enforcement officers consider Ukraine's request for his extradition. The extradition hearing was scheduled to take place on Jan. 5.
Zhevaho himself denies any charges. The embezzlement case also involves a number of former top managers of the liquidated Ukrainian bank.
Since October 2019, Zhevaho has been on Ukraine’s national wanted list, and since July 2021 on the international wanted list.