Russian Pres agrees to pardon actress Natalya Zakharova.

15/7 Tass 330a

MOSCOW, July 15 (Itar-Tass) — Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has agreed to pardon actress Natalya Zakharova who received a jail term in absentia in France for organizing an arson in her former husband’s apartment.

“The President’s consent of principle has been secured and a package of documents is being prepared now so that an appropriate presidential decree could be drafted,” the Presidential press secretary Natalya Timakova said.

Natalya Zakharova got a sentence in absentia in 2006 for three years in jail for arson organized in the apartment of her former husband Patrick Ouari, whom she had a conflict with over their child.

The actress returned to Russia but the warrant for her arrest remained in effect. In January 2011, Zakharova came to the Paris Court to take part in the hearings, which she hoped would restore her rights to the daughter Masha, now living in France.

Her hopes were short-lived, as she was arrested right in the courtroom and taken to the female prison Fleury-Merogis.

April 17, Moscow City’s Presnya district court entertained petitions by Russia’s Federal Service for Penitentiaries, the French Ministry of Justice and the actress herself and ordered her transfer to the Russian authorities for serving the term at home.

The actress is staying at a female prison in the Kostroma region right now, and she has filed a plea for pardoning.

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