Will Russia extradite Hatiko?
Mr Usatii renounced his citizenship in an attempt to become the Moldavian President, according to the CrimeRussia insider. He is urgently trying to restore it now. You can learn more in our article on the matter.
Renato Usatii has never been on such a delicate ground before. He is suspected of a grave crime not only in Great Britain, but in Moldova as well. Mr Usatii may end up in Moldavian prison with a big prison term. His only hope is that Russia does not extradite its citizens, according to the scandalous opposition member himself. He also hopes his case may be considered political. However, Renato Usatii renounced his citizenship in an attempt to become the Moldavian President and is urgently trying to restore it now, according to the CrimeRussia insider. You can learn more in our article on the matter.
Moldavian media have been dedicating their leading articles to Renato Usatii, the scandalous opposition party leader and Bălți Mayor, for 2 weeks straight now. He is involved with 2 criminal cases that were combined into one. This is an old story. The CrimeRussia has extensively covered it back when it unfolded. It was concerned with bloody Solntsevskaya (Solntsevo is a Moscow district, translator's note) gang hunt for German Gorbuntsov, an accomplished Russian financier, and his property; he was compelled to flee the country as a result. They then introduced Mr Usatii as “the man who will kill you” when he settled in Moldova. The gang forced him out of Moldova, too, after seizing Universal-Bank from him. Finally, they sent a killer after the banker fled to the Great Britain. He attempted assassination on March 20, 2012. The killer shot his victim 6 times when Mr Gorbuntsov entered his house section, disappearing into the foggy dusk right afterwards, according to crimerussia.ru. However, the killer was not a professional; he did not just fail the assassination, but threw his outwear and gun away once at the Tube. Police was able to gather enough biological material from the evidence to identify him later.
Photo: Vitalie Proca, the killer, in the London Tube
Killer’s arrest became the last news on banker’s case. Mr Gorbuntsov was maimed for life as the result of the assassination. Vitalie Proca, a Moldavian citizen, was arrested at the Moscow Metro. It is yet to be known why the killer decided to go to a multimillion city upon attempting an assassination. However, his arrival to Moscow seems logical in view of information published by the Prosecutor’s Office for Combating Organized Crime of the Republic of Moldova. Renato Usatii had been living in Moscow and working in Russian Railway logistics for many years. Mr Usatii, who likes to call himself Hatiko, would make contracts with the railway monopolist and work closely with the Solntsevskaya gang, performing the messiest tasks for its leaders.
Photo: Renato Usatii shows his Moscow Region house to a Moldavian journalist
Russia refused to extradite Mr Proca to the Great Britain after his arrest; it extradited him to Romania instead, where he had been put on the wanted list for yet another attempted murder. That is when Mr Gorbuntsov’s case stalled. The banker knew names of both orchestrators and people who ordered his assassination all along. However, nothing changed even after crimerussia.ru published recordings of phone calls featuring Mr Usatii discussing killing German Gorbuntsov.ATTENTION! The recordings contain strong language
There are reports of new suspects involved with banker’s assassination now, 4 years later. They are mostly Mr Proca’s relatives. Police also arrested Valery Malarchuk and Sergey Cheban for attempting to transfer Mr Proca and his family €100 000 (the total sum should have amounted to €600 000, editor's note) as an incentive not to tell on the people who ordered the assassination.
Mr Usatii reserved to his old tactic in the wake of yet another exposure: he recorded a video saying he is an undercover agent and uploaded in to the Internet. He claimed his involvement with Gorbuntsov’s case is due to him “cooperating with law enforcement agencies of different counties”. This is an old trick. Renato Usatii has been bragging about collaborating with enforcement agencies of different counties for years; he even claimed he worked with the Interpol and “helped it extradite Mr Proca”.
“Everything I did was authorized by law enforcement agencies of different counties,” Mr Usaii said.
Moreover, the Bălți Mayor claimed he is a witness in the case and even went as far as to threaten Moldavian prosecutors, saying they would pay for the arrests.
Usatii’s case took off this fall. The ruling on closure of the old case concerned with German Gorbuntsov’s Universal Bank was canceled. Renato Usatii arrived at Moscow to kill Mr Gorbuntsov in 2011. MEP Group Ltd helped him purchase 68 401 shares with the nominal value of 113 545 660 MDL (the bank’s authorized capital). However, the Prosecutor’s Office for Combating Corruption and Investigating Major Cases of the Republic of Moldova closed the case due to lack of the element of the crime in 2013. The ruling was canceled on September 2, 2016; the case file was transferred to the Prosecutor’s Office for Combating Corruption and Investigating Major Cases of the Republic of Moldova. A criminal case under the articles 27, 46, and 145 (Attempted crime, Organized Criminal Gang and Intentional homicide respectively) of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Moldova was opened October 16. The group Renato Usatii was a part of had a 2-stage plan for crimes against German Gorbuntsov, according to the investigators. The 1st stage was concerned with the bank seizure; 2nd – with killing the banker in order to cover tracks.
The Crimemoldova published files of the case against Mr Usatii. They show the Prosecutor’s Office sent the Bălți Mayor a notice summoning him for an interrogation among other things. Prosecutors sent an SMS message with an analogous request to his personal phone number, too. However, the mayor ignored them both. Renato Usatii had been warned about the upcoming problems in advance and promptly fled to Moscow, as revealed later. He now regularly streams from his Rublyovka (a residential area in the western suburbs of Moscow, translator's note) mansion, claiming he is a Western law enforcement agencies’ agent cooperating with Gorbuntsov’s assassination case investigators. It is worth mentioning Grigory Karamalak, a major crime lord also known as Bolgar (Bulgarian), is Mr Usatii’s neighbor. Bolgar and Hatiko are not just neighbors; they are Solntsevskaya gang colleagues.
Photo: Renato Usatii and Grigory Karamalak
Court system has recently shown interest in Mr Karamalak: Andrey Pintya, the former First Deputy of the Prosecutor General of the Republic of Moldova, has been arrested for abuse of authority recently. He is accused of illicit transfer of Karamalak’s case to Russia. Bolgar, whom Moldavia accuses of banditism, blackmailing, extortion, and armed robbery, was put on the international wanted list in 1998. He is known to have been hiding in Russia all this time. All the charges against him were dropped after his case was transferred to Russia in 2014. Andrey Pintya, the First Deputy of the Prosecutor General of the Republic of Moldova at the time, personally authorized it despite Supreme Court of Justice’s ruling. Media outlets do not see correlation between the 2 cases getting off the ground at the same time despite neither their similarities nor the accused affiliation with the Solntsevskaya gang that was behind the bloody hunt for German Gorbuntsov.
The Kishinev Central Sector Court issued the arrest warrant for Mr Usatii following the Prosecutor’s request and put him on the international wanted list on the evening of October 24. However, he is a Russian citizen, and Russia does not extradite its citizens, according Mr Usatii. The CrimeRussia informer doubted the statement, saying he learned Renato Usatii renounced his citizenship in an attempt to become the Moldavian President. He is urgently trying to restore it now since he is in trouble. Mr Usatii sees another way to avoid prosecution in pronouncing the case political. He claims he is able to prove his prosecution is politically motivated in any country.
One way or another, the upcoming events will show how serious the court system is about investigating the scandalous Moldavian politician case. We can only hope that the people guilty of the grave crime will be condignly punished.
FSB has conducted a linguistic analysis of the part of Ksenia Sobchak’s press conference where she spoke about the Crimea, and reasoned that she was not actually calling for violating Russian integrity, a source familiar with the examination findings told BBC Russia.