Israel’s justice minister Wednesday approved the extradition of a Russian alleged hacker to the United States, where he is wanted for fraud.
“After thorough discussions these last few weeks with various parties, including political and judicial actors” Alexei Bourkov is to be extradited, Justice Minister Amir Ohana said in a statement.
The statement did not give a date for the planned extradition, nor the precise allegations faced by the Russian citizen, who was arrested in Israel in 2015.
Bourkov’s name has been mentioned several times by Russian and Israeli media in connection with a possible prisoner swap with Naama Issachar, an Israeli-American convicted in Russia on cannabis charges.
According to Israeli media, Naama Issachar’s family plan to submit a request to Israel’s supreme court to prevent the extradition of Bourkov, in the hope of securing an agreement for their own relative to be freed.
The 26-year-old Israeli was arrested in Russia in April for possession of nine grams of cannabis in her baggage when she was transiting Moscow between India and Israel.
She was convicted earlier this month and sentenced to seven and a half years in prison for trafficking and possession of the drug.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said after the verdict that he “would appreciate” Russian President Vladimir Putin looking into the case.