MOSCOW: A Belarusian model who claimed she had proof of Russian collusion with the Trump election campaign, had her detention in Moscow extended by three days by a Russian court on Saturday.
Anastasia Vashukevich, also known as Nastya Rybka, has been held for questioning since Thursday after she was deported from Thailand as part of a group convicted of participating in a “sex training course”.
“The court has decided to extend her detention by 72 hours,” judge Natalya Borissenkova was cited as stating by the Ria Novosti news agency.
She denied the accusation of prostitution, telling the court that “I am not guilty of what I am accused,” Interfax reported.
In a case that veered between salacious and bizarre, Vashukevich has said she had travelled to Thailand after becoming embroiled in a political scandal with Russian aluminium tycoon Oleg Deripaska — a one-time associate of US President Trump’s disgraced former campaign director Paul Manafort.
She then set tongues wagging by promising to reveal “missing puzzle pieces” regarding claims the Kremlin aided Trump’s 2016 presidential election victory.
But the material never surfaced and critics dismissed the claims as a publicity stunt.
Both Washington and Moscow publicly shrugged off Vashukevich’s story, which the US State Department described as “bizarre”.
She had been in custody in Thailand since a police raid in the sleazy seaside resort of Pattaya early last year.
She was arrested at Moscow airport on Thursday after being deported from Thailand where she had spent a year in prison for participating in a “sex training course”.
During the hearing in Moscow, she said she did not want to “in any way compromise Oleg Deripaska”.
“I have had enough,” she added, according to Interfax.
Her lawyer Dmitry Zatsarinsky, told reporters that his young client “has committed no crime” and had “nothing to do with” Deripaska and “still less with Donald Trump”.
On Friday he denounced her arrest, which happened while she was in transit from Thailand on her way to Belarus.