YURI KOLOBOV, the Ukrainian ex-minister of Finance arrested recently in Altea, allegedly embezzled €7 million.
He is now remanded in custody in Madrid while the National High Court reviews the Ukrainian government’s extradition request.
Meanwhile, a Benidorm basketball team is a player short, as 42-year-old Kolobov played regularly with the ISCV senior team.
“He kept himself in good shape for his age and you could tell that he had played since he was a boy,” the club’s president Julian Romay told the local Spanish press.
Kolobov made no attempt to conceal his identity, revealed his teammates, who knew him as Yuri and communicated with him in English as he spoke no Spanish. They were aware that he was a former minister but only knew that he had left Ukraine owing to political problems, they said.
He rarely missed a training session and was always accompanied by two bodyguards.
“He was an excellent person and very well thought-of by the team,” Romay said.