17 January 1995
Latest news on international kidnapping case by "PR Newswire"

WOLF, BLOCK attorney Dimitry O. Afanasiev helps American and Russian law enforcement authorities crack international kidnapping case

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has reported that Philadelphia resident Dimitry Afanasiev, an attorney at Wolf, Block, Schorr and Solis-Cohen, provided vital assistance to the Bureau in their efforts to crack an international kidnapping case.

In a press release issued today by the FBI's Newark, N.J., office, it was reported that an Australian citizen and his wife, being held against their will in Russia, were freed yesterday, in a unique case involving American, Russian and Australian law enforcement authorities. The unidentified Australian couple were reportedly not seriously harmed after eight days of captivity, during which time their Russian captors were demanding a payment of more than $1.5 million from the victim's relatives in New Jersey.

In the release, FBI Special Agent Gary L. Penrith, citing the communication and coordination between the FBI and its Russian counterpart, stated, "This is another dividend derived as a result of the transformation which has occurred in what was the Soviet Union. Such close cooperation in a criminal investigation between these two agencies would have been heretofore unthinkable."

Penrith went on to express his appreciation to the law firm of Wolf, Block, Schorr and Solis-Cohen of Philadelphia and its attorney Dimitry O. Afanasiev, who assisted in establishing lines of communication with Russian authorities and in providing translation services.