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The US prosecutor's office charged former Armenian Ambassador to China and Russian citizen in money laundering and bribery, the US Department of Justice reported.

A 62-year-old Armenian citizen Azat Martirossian and Russian citizen Vitaly Leshkov were charged  for their alleged participation in a scheme to launder bribe payments to foreign government officials for the benefit of a Columbus, Ohio-based subsidiary of Rolls-Royce plc, to secure a contract worth approximately $145 million to supply equipment and services to power a gas pipeline from Kazakhstan to China.

Greece citizen, Petros Contoguris was also charged on the counts. Contoguris previously had been charged on all of these counts in an indictment that was filed on October 12, 2017.

Rolls-Royce in Ohio made several payments to his company, knowing that the amount will be divided between high-ranking officials from the Kazakh national company KazMunaiGaz, Bloomberg reported.

According to the Department of Justice, all three defendants reside outside the US.

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