Politkovskaya Murder Suspect Charged
A suspect has been charged with murder in the 2006 killing of journalist Anna Politkovskaya, Russian investigators said Thursday.
The Investigative Committee, the country’s top investigative body, said in a statement it had gathered sufficient evidence of Rustam Makhmudov’s guilt.
Politkovskaya, a sharp critic of the Kremlin and its policies in Chechnya, was gunned down in the elevator of her Moscow apartment building on October 7, 2006. The brutal attack drew worldwide attention to violence against journalists in Russia, rated one of the most dangerous countries in the world for reporters.
The Investigative Committee said Makhmudov is also suspected of committing abduction and extortion in Moscow in the 1990s
He was arrested in his native Chechnya on Tuesday. Makhmudov was previously hiding in Belgium and fled the country after the Belgian authorities intensified a search for him at Russia’s request.
Makhmudov’s two brothers were among three men accused of playing minor roles in the killing — as lookout and getaway driver.
A third suspect — a former Moscow police officer — was accused of supplying the murder weapons. A jury found them not guilty in 2009, but the Russian Supreme Court overruled the acquittal and sent the case back to prosecutors.
Investigators still remain silent about who might have ordered the killing.