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Russian ombudsman pledges support for businessmen

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Sept. 12, 2012, 5:50 p.m. | Russia and former Soviet Union — by Associated Press

Russia's commissioner for entrepreneurs' rights Boris Titov speaks at a meeting of European businessmen in Moscow, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012.
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Associated Press

Associated Press

MOSCOW — Russia's commissioner for entrepreneurs' rights has vowed to combat illegal prosecutions and biased court rulings against businessmen.

President Vladimir Putin set up the ombudsman's post in June in a bid to address investors' concerns about the country's investment climate. Thousands of businessmen have been jailed across Russia on charges trumped up by corrupt officials. Lawyer Sergei Magnitsky died in jail in 2009 after he accused police officers of seizing assets from the firm he was working for.

Commissioner Boris Titov on Wednesday told a meeting of European businessmen that he would focus on preventing illegal prosecutions and biased court rulings.

Titov has the power to represent business owners in courts, file claims on their behalf and suspend rulings of tax and customs bodies pending a court decision.

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