Friday, September 22, 2017

Urals-based lawyer investigated in 41 murders

A Russian Urals-based lawyer arrested in July on suspicion of killing a U.S. citizen may have also been a member of a group that carried out at least 41 murders.

Vasily Fedorovich was arrested on July 19 as part of an investigation into the murder of Georgy Yakubyan, whose mutilated body was found in a garage in the outskirts of Yekaterinburg. After being detained, Fedorovich tried to commit suicide, according to RIA Novosti.

A police source said that there may be reason to believe he was part of an organized crime group operating in Yekaterinburg, Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Police have arrested dozens of other members of the group, including several women. The group led police to the locations of the bodies of 41 other murder victims, 13 of which have been excavated.

"Their motives for the murders varied. They killed migrants under Nazi slogans and also carried out murders as hired killers," the source said, RIA Novosti reports.

Fedorovich has also been accused of kidnapping and rape. He is known to have had an interest in guns and knives. He has been under investigation for his connection with the widely-publicized Volkssturm neo-Nazo gang case in Yekaterinburg. In 2011, various leaders of the group were sentenced to serve time in jail, though Federovich and other members of the gang were acquitted, RIA Novosti reports.