Thursday, March 23

Russia-Ukraine War | Putin commissions a prosecutor linked to the mafia in Spain to investigate the crimes in Ukraine

The Government of Vladimir Putin has wanted to respond to the criticism from the rest of the world for the crimes committed in the Ukrainian territories of Bucha and Kramatorsk, who denies that they are the work of his army, ordering one investigation in this regard to the prosecutor Alexander Bastrykin, most trusted person. But it so happens that Bastrykin is one of the citizens russians included in the ‘black list’ prepared by the State Attorney General’s Office for its links to organized crime and corruption in Spain, as published exclusively by ‘El Periódico de España’, a medium of the same editorial group as this newspaper.

The now president of the Russian Investigative Committee -who was singled out in Spain in the so-called ‘Troika operation’ for having acted “in the service” of the St. Petersburg mafia-, has ordered that criminal cases be opened in relation to the military withdrawal from the town of Bucha, where more than 400 civilian bodies were found after the departure of the Russian troops. And he has done the same for the bombing of the Kramatorsk train station, which caused the death of at least 50 people. Russia does not admit any responsibility in these massacresso the Bastrykin investigations have officially been opened by the dissemination of “false” information by ukrainian authorities against the Russian Armywhich could carry penalties of up to 15 years in prison.

Bastrykin is a character from the environment close to Putin and has been included in the list prepared by the Anti-Corruption prosecutors Juan José Rosa and José Grinda for the relations he had with the criminal organization ‘Tambovskaya-Malyshevskaya’-headed by Gennadios Petrov and Alexander Malyshev-, which were uncovered thanks to the recordings made by the Civil Guard by court order.

US sanctioned

As far as investigations in Spain are concerned, the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office did not formalize any accusation against Bastrykin, considering that he was not competent to investigate this official and that it was up to the Russian State to carry out the pertinent investigations.

However, in the indictment presented by the Public Prosecutor at the National High Court against the members of the alleged Tambovskaya mafia clan, it specified that Bastrykin had acted for the benefit of Petrov. In fact, as stated in the aforementioned recordings, the head of the mafia organization himself came to show his satisfaction with the election in 2007 of Bastrykin as head of the Investigative Committee of the Office of the General Prosecutor of Russia.

Bastrykin’s appointment

The transcript of this conversation made by the journalist Anastasia Kirilenko highlights that, on June 22, 2007, Petrov talks to Leonid Khristoforov, a member of the ‘Malyshevskaya’ clan, about Bastrykin’s appointment: “The man has been appointed. The one I told you about, remember? So he’s done, he’s got the job. A very relevant one too.” “Oh great,” Khristoforov replies. Bastrykin was appointed on the same day, June 22, 2007, chairman of the Investigative Committee of the Russian General Prosecutor’s Office.

Curiously, this body, which in 2011 was renamed the Russian Investigative Committee, is responsible for the fight against corruption and for analyzing the actions of the Police and public authorities. For this reason, Bastrykin is the main instigator of the accusations presented against the opposition leader Alexéi Navalni, who is serving two sentences of three and nine years in prison.

Bastrykin maintained his contacts with the St. Petersburg mafia through the chief general of the Main Directorate of the Russian Ministry of the Interior Nikolai Nikolaevich Aulov and the former high-ranking official of the Prosecutor’s Office Igor Sobolevsky, who was the ‘number two’ of the Committee. In another conversation between Aulov and Petrov, the former informs Petrov that a team of 30 officers was going to investigate the activities of Vladimir Kumarin (Barsukov), the leader of Petrov’s rival mafia organization in St. Petersburg. Two months later Kumarin was arrested, and has been in prison ever since, The Insider reports.

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At the behest of the ‘king’

Days later, Petrov tells Leonid Khristoforov, again according to the recordings, that the police operation had been carried out at the request of the “king”: “What I want to say is that the will of the ‘king’ with respect to the neighbor is very specific. . […] My friend Igor [Sobolevsky]deputy head of this new structure, called me yesterday afternoon“.

The indictment also alludes to the fact that Bastrykin would have come to ask Petrov to help him find an office in St. Petersburg. Nail steps that according to the recordings would have been made by the ‘number two’ of the prosecutor Igor Sobolevsky who, by the way, is also included in the ‘black list’ of the Spanish Public Prosecutor’s Office.

On March 4, 2009, the then General Prosecutor of the Russian State, Yuri Chaika, visited Madrid to meet with a counterpart, Cándido Conde-Pumpido. And secretly, as this newspaper explained, he demanded from the Spanish State the information that prosecutors José Grinda, David Martínez Madero and Juan Carrau had obtained about General Nikolai Nikolaevich Aulov and Igor Sobolevsky. The first had, always according to Anticorruption, a “close” relationship with the leaders of the mafia clan, to whom he informed of the matters being investigated. For his part, Sobolevski maintained a “frequent” communication and an exchange of “favors” with the clan.

Evidence against Sobolevsky

Related news

In 2018, the National Court acquitted 17 secondary members of the Petrov and Malyshev mafia clan, failing to prove that they had laundered in Spain the huge amounts of money from the criminal activities of the criminal organization in Saint Petersburg. However, a second ruling, this one dated December 23, 2021, made it possible for the magistrates of the Criminal Chamber to change their criteria and convict Irina Ussova, the sister of Malyshev’s partner, for money laundering. The judges decreed the embargo of the balance of an account that this woman had blocked in Spain, which had 416,167 euros. Neither Petrov nor Malyshev have been extradited to Spain, as Russia does not hand over its nationals to other countries.

Since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, Bastrykin, who reports directly to Vladimir Putin as Russian president, has ordered the opening of different investigations into the dissemination of “deliberately false information” about the activities of the Russian armed forces in Bucha; about the bombing of the Kramatorsk railway station; and the death of a woman in Mariupol “at the hands of Ukrainian nationalists”. He has also commissioned the opening of investigations into the alleged existence of a prison controlled by the Azov Battalion intended to detain pro-Russian opponents, who would have been subjected to ill-treatment; and on the alleged use of biological weapons by Ukraine.

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