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Murder of Putin critic Nikolai Glushkov ‘made to look like suicide’, probe finds

The West London Coroner’s office said there was evidence to suggest his death was made to look like suicide and there had been ‘third-party involvement'.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: April 10, 2021 4:44:27 pm
Nikolai Glushkov, 68, was an associate of Boris Berezovsky, a Russian oligarch and strong Kremlin critic who died under disputed circumstances in 2013. (Source: AP)

A coroner has concluded that Russian businessman Nikolai Glushkov was strangled in his house by a third party. Glushkov who had been vocal of his criticism towards Putin was found dead in his south-west London home in March 2018.

The West London Coroner’s office said there was evidence to suggest his death was made to look like suicide and there had been ‘third-party involvement’, BBC reported.

According to senior coroner Chinyere Inyama, Glushkov was unlawfully killed.

Glushkov sought asylum in the UK in 2010 after fleeing Russia where he had been accused of fraud as the deputy director of Aeroflot airline. In his 2017 trial in absentia, a Russian court sentenced him to eight years after convicting him of stealing £87 million from the airline.

Glushkov was due to appear at the Commercial Court in London to defend himself, the day his body was discovered by his daughter. He was 68 at the time of his death.

Glushkov’s death came a week after former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned by novichok, a powerful nerve agent.

BBC reported that Dominic Biel, the paramedic at the scene recalls that his death seemed “suspicious” and Glushkov’s daughter Natalia’s boyfriend said, “Don’t touch anything until the police come here – someone’s killed him.”

A pathology report submitted to the court summarised that the injuries “could be consistent with a neck-hold, applied from behind, and the assailant being behind the victim.” It added, “There is a lack of injuries to suggest prolonged grappling or restraint with the third party, and a lack of injuries of a defensive nature to the upper limbs.”

The Metropolitan police service’s terrorism unit also provided information similar to the coroner’s report. Commander Richard Smith said nearly 2,000 witnesses have been contacted and a motive is yet to be established.

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