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Published in Stream:
Russia Update: March 26, 2015
Press by
The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
3 Suspects in Nemtsov Murder Case May Be Released; Contract Fee Revealed as $433,000 for 5 Perpetrators
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Three suspects in the murder of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov may be released, Kommersant reports today March 26, citing a source close to the investigation.

The case for keeping three of the suspects -- Shadid Gubashev, Khamzat Bakhayev and Tamerlan Eskerkhanov -- may fall apart as they were handled in one court session when their cases should have been reviewed separately, a violation of the Code of Criminal Procedures by the Basmanny Court, say their lawyers.

A review of their complaints will take place April 1. The Investigative Committee called for their jailing because of the severe nature of the crime and belief that they may flee, but without citing any evidence that they were involved in the murder. Previous press reports indicate that some of them have alibis.

Kommersant also discovered that case materials may have indicated that a total of 25 million rubles ($433,481) was offered for the murder, not just the 5 million ($83,000) said to be given to Zaur Dadayev. The contractor of the murder -- who is still not named -- was said to offer 5 million to each of the 5 suspects currently in jail, said Kommersant.

But Ivan Gerasimov, lawyer for Zaur Dadayev, the lead suspect in the case, says he knows nothing about either the motivation for the crime or the amount of any supposed contract payment, although he noted that investigators believe the murder was contracted. He also noted that his client had not formally withdrawn his confession.

In a meeting with human rights activists earlier this month, Dadayev said he was tortured and denied his confession. Gerasimov said he was still gathering evidence of his client's innocence.

-- Catherine A. Fitzpatrick