9 Sep 2019 19:55

Pamfilova assault suspect charged with robbery, could be detained - Investigative Committee

MOSCOW. Sept 9 (Interfax) - The man accused of assaulting Ella Pamfilova, the head of Russia's central election commission, has admitted his guilt and investigators are petitioning for his arrest, Investigative Committee spokeswoman Svetlana Petrenko said.

"While being questioned, [Bakhyt] Karaballayev admitted his guilt for the crime and gave evidence about its circumstances. He explained that he picked the house randomly because of its proximity to his night shelter. The assailant was unaware of the identity of the landlord," Petrenko told Interfax on Monday.

Karabalayev has been charged with a house break-in; the Basmanny District Court of Moscow will be asked to remand him into custody, she said.

"Investigators have ordered necessary tests to ascertain the circumstances of the incident. The origin of the device which the assailant used against his victim is being investigated," Petrenko said.

Article 162 of the Criminal Code provides up to 12 years of imprisonment.

The assault happened in the early hours of September 6. The intruder entered Pamfilova's house in the Moscow region and assaulted her with a stun gun. Prosecutor General Yury Chaika ordered a criminal inquiry, which has since been taken over from police by the Investigative Committee headquarters.

A source told Interfax that Karaballayev, who arrived from Kazakhstan, had no documents, no home, and no means to support himself. "The man was found in a forest shelter during a manhunt not far from the village where he committed the crime. He did not try to deny; he said it was him who entered the woman's house in search of some food," the source said.

Karaballayev arrived in Russia several years ago. He has held various jobs as a laborer since then but found himself almost unemployable after losing his documents, thus forcing him to survive on money earned from taking odd jobs, begging, and petty theft, while sleeping in forests, at train stations, and on heated roads.