Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Russian tycoon could be freed after payment deal


A Russian man detained in Cambodia for allegedly threatening and assaulting local sailors could be released after his lawyers agreed to pay compensation to the victims of the attack.

Sergei Polonsky, 40, was arrested on New Year’s Day along with two other Russians for assaulting a group of sailors ferrying him between islands in the Cambodian archipelago where he owns a home.

Initially, Mr Polonsky, a construction tycoon, claimed he was innocent, but now a business partner has said he has apologised to the sailors and agreed to pay compensation, in the hope the charges against him will be revised and he will be released.

Mr Polonsky, who is also wanted for questioning in Russia over a fraud case, was punched during the recording of a TV show in 2011 by Alexander Lebedev, the financial backer of The Independent, who faces a potential court case in Russia over the incident.