Dmitry Peskov, the press secretary to Vladimir Putin, said the Russian president did not defend the country’s prosecution of American citizen Michael Calvey, who leads the major investment fund Baring Vostok.
On February 25, Bloomberg reported that Putin had made statements in a closed meeting several days before that appeared to justify Calvey’s arrest. Putin reportedly said that while he did not personally approve the arrest in advance, the accusations against Calvey could not be ignored and may justify putting the investor in custody. When asked later that day whether Putin had in fact justified Calvey’s arrest, Peskov answered, “Unequivocally no. The president was stating the facts. He did not state any preferences of his own.”