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Criminal Case Against NGO Head Aslamazyan To Be Re-qualified As Administrative One

MOSCOW. May 28 (Interfax) - The foreign currency smuggling case against journalist Manana Aslamazyan will be re-qualified as an administrative case to comply with a Constitutional Court ruling.

"The case against Educated Media Foundation head Manana Aslamazyan will be dropped, re-qualified under a relevant administrative article, and passed on to investigative agencies," a source from the Investigative Committee within the Interior Ministry system, who has handled the case until lately, told Interfax on Wednesday.

The Constitutional Court ruling, which was made on Tuesday, comes into force at the moment of its promulgation and is not subject to appeal, the source said.

Irina Dudukina, a spokesperson for the Investigative Committee, told Interfax that "the Investigative Committee will make a decision on Aslamazyan's case strictly in line with the law."

Aslamazyan was detained at the Sheremetyevo airport in Moscow upon returning from Paris last January. According to the investigation, Aslamazyan failed to declare 9,550 euro and more than 5,000 rubles to customs at the airport. The maximum amount of money that can be brought into Russia without declaration is the equivalent of $10,000. A smuggling criminal case was opened against Aslamazyan, and she was made to sign a pledge not to leave town. However, Aslamazyan managed to leave Russia and is currently on the international wanted list.