/ 15 February 2012

‘Igor the Russian’ strapped for cash in bail bid

A bail application on Wednesday by Russian strip club owner Igor Russol was delayed as he struggled to raise funds for his legal costs.

Defence attorney Juan Smuts told the Cape Town District Court that Russol, who is charged with extortion, had “tried to move heaven and earth” to raise the necessary finance for the bail application but could not do so while in detention.

Smuts and prosecutor Aradhana Heeramun agreed to a postponement to March 1. The lawyer said he was sure his client would have raised the money by then.

The Russian immigrant was arrested earlier in 2012 on extortion charges amounting to R650 000.

Police have apparently linked him to Cape Town’s underworld, including to the slain Jurie “The Russian” Ulianitski.

Smuts said his client had not yet informed him what his “anticipated instructions” would be in connection with the charge itself.

Financial difficulties
He said he was reluctant to withdraw at this stage as Russol’s legal representative.

Should he be forced to do so for financial reasons, it would delay the proceedings as another attorney would have to be appointed, possibly by the legal aid authorities, he said.

Heeramun told magistrate Jasthree Steyn that she had given the defence details of the charge and that the State was ready to proceed.

However, Smuts said he needed time to study the details and to consult his client.

Russol’s co-accused, Kevin Bailey, was released on R2 000 bail at their previous hearing on February 6.

Russol will remain at the Goodwood Prison until his next appearance on March 1. — Sapa