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Kremlin slams extradition of businessman to US as 'ongoing hunt for Russian citizens'

Switzerland's national flag is displayed on the Swiss Federal Criminal Court (Bundesstrafgericht) building in Bellinzona, Switzerland, December 3, 2020. (Photo by Reuters)

Russian businessman Vladislav Klyushin has been extradited from Switzerland to the United States, prompting a reaction from the Kremlin.

The Swiss justice ministry said in a statement that Klyushin was handed over to US law enforcement agents who accompanied him on a flight from Zurich to the United States.

"Vladislav Klyushin was extradited to the US today. He was transferred in Zurich to US police officers, who escorted him to a flight to the United States," the ministry said.

Klyushin faces insider trading charges in the United States, the ministry added in its statement.

The prominent Russian businessman had been arrested in Switzerland on March 21 in the airport of the city of Sion, where he arrived together with his family, Le Matin Dimanche news outlet reported earlier.

Klyushin is also charged with the alleged hacking of US multinational companies, according to the newspaper.

Moscow had requested Klyushin’s extradition to Russia; however, the request was rejected by Swiss officials.

In response to Klyushin's extradition to the US, Russia said the move was part of an ongoing hunt for Russians by Washington.

"We are forced to state that we are dealing with another episode in Washington's ongoing hunt for Russian citizens in third countries," the TASS news agency cited Vladimir Khokhlov, a spokesperson for the Russian embassy in Switzerland, as saying on Sunday.

Klyushin, who owns a Russian company that provides media monitoring as well as cyber-security services, has worked with the Russian presidential administration and government.

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