17 Dec 2019 14:25

Court arrests 11th defendant in Ingushetia's Center E head murder

MOSCOW. Dec 17 (Interfax) - The Moscow Basmanny District Court has ordered the two-month arrest of Alikhan Ozdoyev on counts of killing Ibragim Eldzharkiyev, the head of the Ingush Interior Ministry's Center E (Extremism) in Moscow, court press secretary Irina Morozova said.

"The request of investigators for placing Ozdoyev under arrest until February 15 has been granted," Morozova told Interfax on Tuesday.

Ozdoyev was detained on the night of December 15 in Moscow. He was accused of making an attempt on the life of a law enforcement officer and illegally obtaining weapons in the capacity of an organized group member.

Ozdoyev is the 11th man arrested in this case.

A source told Interfax on December 11 that the number of defendants in the Eldzharkiyev murder case would grow to 30. Interfax has yet to obtain official confirmation of this information.

Eldzharkiyev was shot and killed in Moscow on November 2 together with his brother Abdulakhmed, a doctor of a Moscow clinic. According to the official information, the assailant fired at least ten shots at the two victims.

Investigators are probing both the attack on Eldzharkiyev, which was perpetrated on January 12, 2019, and his murder on November 2.

The Moscow Basmanny District Court arrested six suspects, including businessman Khasan Polonkoyev, his son Zakre, his nephew Aslan, as well as Alikhan Belkhoroyev, Ise Nakastoyev, and Ali Kartoyev, on December 7. They will be incarcerated until February 6, 2020.

Investigators suspect Khasan Polonkoyev of being the ring leader. Polonkoyev's lawyer Murad Musayev told Interfax that his client had been charged with the attack on Eldzharkiyev, which happened a year ago, but not with the murder.

The court arrested Kureishi Kartoyev, the suspected killer of Eldzharkiyev, in absentia on November 18. Gelani Kostoyev, Akhmed Arapiyev, and Magomed-Gazi Chaniyev were taken into custody.

According to Interfax sources, police identified the main suspect as Kureish Kartoyev, a 46-year-old native of Ingushetia nicknamed Kolya, who is a member of the influential Batal-Haji religious community.

According to sources, Kartoyev, who may have gone into hiding in Turkey, is believed to be the police officer's killer. He is on the international wanted list.

Investigators think that Eldzharkiyev was killed because of his professional activities and because of his alleged involvement in the death of a leader of the influential Batal-Haji group, Ibragim Belkhoroyev.

Ibragim Belkhoroyev, 46, was killed by unknown persons in Nazran on December 31, 2018. He had been attacked before. His car was blown up in September 2008, and he and another person were wounded. His car was also set on fire near his home in May 2016.

Batal-Haji Belkhoroyev (1821-1914) is a Chechen-Ingush religious figure of the 19th and early 20th centuries. His followers set up a religious community that exists to this day and is governed by his ancestors.