Ingushetia extremism fighter's assassination: was Ibragim Eldzharkiev standing in somebody's way? 

Ingushetia extremism fighter's assassination: was Ibragim Eldzharkiev standing in somebody's way?
Photo: The CrimeRussia

Head of the MIA Center for Combating Extremism in the Republic of Ingushetia Ibragim Eldzharkiev and his brother Akhmed Abdul Eldzharkiev have been buried at the Nazran family cemetery. They were shot by unknown, who escaped in a BMW X7. The priority version is the blood feud of the radical Ingush sect of the Batalkhadjins, whose followers are known as the batlaks. They considered the deceased officer of the Ministry of Internal Affairs involved in the murder of their leader Ibragim Belkhoroev, which occurred in Nazran last December. It was found that the criminal used a Kedr submachine gun, which is in service with the anti-terror forces, internal troops, and special forces. The CrimeRussia found out the circumstances and alleged motives of the high-profile murder.

Shooting outside a residential building

On November 2, a shooting occurred outside 32 Academician Anokhin Street, Bld. 1, as a result of which 36-year-old Head of the Center for Combating Extremism of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Ingushetia, Ibragim Eldzharkiev, and his brother, 31-year-old Akhmed Abdul Eldzharkiev, were killed. A neurosurgeon by training, the latter lived in Moscow and worked as an anesthesiologist and resuscitator of the First Town Hospital (Pirogov Clinical Hospital No. 1). Apparently, Ibragim's brother was a randomized victim.

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Ibragim Eldzharkiev

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Akhmed Abdul Eldzharkiev

It is known that 37-year-old businessman Gursman Sapraliev, the owner of Rusprom and a friend of the victims, was also in the car. He was not injured. The criminals waited for their victims, after which they shot them point blank and fled in a BMW X7, which, according to available information, was wanted.

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Scene of murder

It is known that the killer fired at least ten times and even managed to put a bullet in the victims’ heads. This is nothing more than a carefully planned contract kill.

At the scene, law enforcers found ten shells and three bullets. It was found that the Eldzharkiev brothers were killed with a 2010 Kedr submachine gun. This type of weapon is in the arsenal of the anti-terrorist forces, internal troops, and special forces.

Moment of Ibragim Eldzharkiev's murder and story of an eyewitness

An APB and Vulkan were immediately put out in the capital; police squads and patrols were reinforced. Nevertheless, the police mixed up the car in which the killers escaped. A similar BMW X7 owned by Satell IT (director – Alexander Pyankov) was found close to the scene of murder on Universitetsky Avenue. However, after the inspection of the car and the explanations of its owner, it was found that the vehicle was not involved in the crime. How could this happen? This very license plate was reported to the police. Apparently, the criminals used fake license plate.

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The car which law enforcers seized by mistake

The ICR Main Investigations Directorate in Moscow initiated a criminal case under part 2 of Art. 105 of the Russian Criminal Code (Murder of Two or More Persons). A special plan to track down and arrest the killer currently operates in Moscow, a Moscow MIA Main Directorate representative Yury Titov said. However, according to the information available, the criminals have already left the Moscow region. Nine persons suspected of organizing and committing the crime have been put on the wanted list. Investigation believes that a group of persons may be involved in the crime, although there was only one shooter. CCTV footage is being checked; people living in the houses close to the scene of murder and witnesses are being questioned. It is reported that the vast majority of local residents are not willing to discuss this high-profile crime. The reason is trivial; they are afraid.

Meanwhile, on November 3, the Investigative Committee reported on some serious progress in solving this murder, emphasizing that priority versions have been outlined and a circle of persons involved were being worked out.

On November 5, the name of the first suspect in the case, a Batalkhadzhin and ex-deputy Akhmed Belkhoroev, the son of Sultan Belkhoroev, appeared in the media. Allegedly, after the murder, he received dozens of approving SMS messages on his mobile phone and even responded them.

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Akhmed Belkhoroev

At the same time, it is not yet clear for what reason Ibragim Eldzharkiev was in Moscow. Sources’ information varies. Some say that he arrived in the capital on personal matters. Others say that he was on a business trip. In addition, there is a version that the Ingush fighter with extremism came to Moscow because of his studies at the RANEPA. One thing is clear. Regardless of the reason that led him to the Russian capital, Ibragim Eldzharkiev was under surveillance.

It is known that in January this year, there was an assassination an attempt on him. On January 12, his car was shot at by unknown people with assault rifles on one of the Caucasian highways. The day before, he met with Head of the Chechen parliament, Magomed Daudov (Lord). After that, a Lada car started following Eldzharkiev's Mercedes. Near the Kavkaz checkpoint, some men started shooting from it. The head of CCE was not injured, but decided to use an armored SUV ever since. Although, it did not help him.

An ardent fighter against extremists

It is known that Ibragim Eldzharkiev began his professional career in the regional department of the Federal Drug Control Service in 2004, where he went was first a security officer and then head of an operational service group. In 2016, he joined the internal affairs bodies and became head of the Center for Combating Extremism in the Ingush Ministry of Internal Affairs. According to his colleagues, he was an ardent fighter against extremism. Dozens of crimes were solved under the direct supervision and with the personal participation of officer Eldzharkiev, including the suppression of the activities of four organized criminal extremist groups and the seizure of more than a thousand pieces of weapons and ammunition.

It is known that for his high professionalism and courage in the fight against extremism, Ibragim Eldzharkiev was awarded the medal “For Distinction in the Protection of Public Order.”

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Police Lieutenant-Colonel Eldzharkiev was in good standing with his superiors

Nevertheless, there is information that during his service at the Federal Penitentiary Service for Ingushetia, he was checked for involvement in theft of motor vehicles as part of an organized criminal group. There are no details. Apparently, the check did not confirm this. It is also known that his candidacy was considered for the post of chief of police of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ingushetia.

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Eldzharkiev was checked for involvement in an OCG

Ibragim Eldzharkiev and his brother Akhmed Abdul were buried at the family cemetery in Nazran on November 4. Besides family, friends, and relatives, Ibragim's colleagues, including Head of the Ingushetian Ministry of Internal Affairs Mikhail Korobkin and Head of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia in the North Caucasus Federal District, Colonel-General Sergey Bachurin, as well as hundreds of local residents came to say them goodbye. The funeral was held according to Ingush customs.

For security reasons, the place was cordoned off, and police cordons were placed every 150-200 meters along the funeral procession. Ibragim Eldzharkiev has three underage children.    

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Ingushetia mourns for Ibragim Eldzharkiev

Ingush “fracture”

There are several versions of the murder of Ibragim Eldzharkiev, one of which is related to his official activities. After his death, local human rights activists reported complaints of torture carried out by Eldzharkiev’s subordinates. In particular, Moskovsky Komsomolets reported that a criminal case was initiated into one of the episodes, but not a single CCE employee was detained. In addition, according to the victim, the publication allegedly cited the late Eldzharkiev: “We are the only law. No one can judge us.”

It is noteworthy that in 2016, a criminal case was initiated against former Head of the Center for Combating Extremism, Timur Khamkhoev, and five of his subordinates. They were accused of torture. In the summer of 2018, the court sentenced Khamkhoev to 7 years, and his subordinates received different terms of imprisonment. 

In any case, the “official” version is plausible, since the murdered person was a high-ranking police officer. Even regardless of the likelihood of retaliation for torture, Eldzharkiev’s track record of the detention of extremists and the elimination of their networks is impressive. The criminals have relatives who were eager to avenge their detained (and sometimes killed) family members.

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Ibragim Belkhoroev died on December 31, 2018

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Ibragim Belkhoroev’s riddled car

Belkhoroev’s relatives (there are more than 30 people in his family) believe that the crime was committed by security officials from the CCE and personally Ibrahim Eldzharkiev. This was the reason for the January assassination attempt on him. The officer was not injured, but the fact that his murder in Moscow is revenge for the shooting of the batlak leader Belkhoroev is regarded as one of the main versions.

It is known that as of recently, Ibragim Eldzharkiev had been an active participant in the confrontation between the federal center and the influential clan of the Belkhoroevs. According to VChK-OGPU, at the federal level, the interests of the clan were represented by Khasan Tumgoev, one of the richest people in the republic, who financed the construction of several facilities in Magas, bought a plant for the production of mineral water, etc. The total amount of his official investments exceeded 7 billion rubles ($110.3 million). Ibragim Belkhoroev, who was murdered in December last year, was the brother of Khasan Tumgoev’s wife and was one of the most prominent clan members, positioning himself as a religious leader. 

“In reality, since the first Chechen war, Ibragim (known as Ibi) had been the leader of a certain mixture of an organized crime group and cult. He was successful at it. He bonded with many influential people from Chechnya. In Moscow, crime lord Batyr Tumgoev maintained criminal relations in the interests of the clan. Through Khasan Tumgoev, the clan managed to establish excellent relations with Yunus-Bek Yevkurov. In 2018, the batlaks decided to appoint clan representatives to a number of leadership posts in the region. They began to express their ambitions as the leading forces of Ingushetia. Moscow did not like it; the batlaks immediately suffered several blows. Khasan Tumgoev was arrested by the FSB for embezzlement from Rosatom. Batyr Tumgoev was put in custody for the murder of Shabtay Kalmanovich 10 years ago. It was different in Ingushetia...” VChK-OGPU reports. 

52-year-old Khasan Tumgoev is one of the richest Ingush businessmen. In particular, he owns the Achaluki mineral water plant and previously was the general director of the managing company Rosatomstroy Concern. He was detained in his country house in Barvikha in December 2018. The Lefortovo Court of Moscow arrested him on suspicion of committing a crime under part 4 of Art. 159 (Embezzlement through Swindling). It concerns the embezzlement of 355 million rubles ($5.6 million) allocated for the reconstruction of the premises of the Research Institute of Measuring Systems in Nizhny Novgorod through his company OSK.  

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Khasan Tumgoev

On June 7, 2019, the Presnensky Court of Moscow arrested Batyr Tumgoev, one of the suspects in the murder of the owner of Spartak, businessman Shabtay Kalmanovich, in Moscow in November 2009. To recall, on Smolenskaya embankment, unidentified men opened fire on a Mercedes-Benz 500, in which Shabtay Kalmanovich was on his way to meet with Dmitry Medvedev’s Presidential Aide Alexander Abramov.

The businessman died, and his driver was injured.

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Scene of Shabtay Kalmanovich’s murder

Investigators seized 19 9-mm caliber cartridges from the crime scene. During the investigation, it turned out that Batyr Tumgoev previously got suspended sentence for arbitrariness. In addition, in June this year, the second suspect in Kalmanovich’s murder, a native of Ingushetia, Ali Belkhoroev, was detained.

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Ali Belkhoroev and Batyr Tumgoev

Blood feud?

It should be stressed that in some cases, even in relation to their own people, the batlaks acted rather harshly. For example, during the first Chechen war, apart from Ibragim Belkhoroev, there were some Makar and Bashir at the top of the clan; their relations were rather strained. After another conflict, Makar ordered some Chechens to kill Bashir. After that, Makar was invited to look at the mutilated corpse of his enemy, but Bashir, who was alive, and the Chechens, who had put up a huge bill for Makar’s attempt, were waiting for him at the named address. He paid the bill together with Ibragim Belkhoroev. Soon, Belkhoroev accused Bashir of involvement in the abductions of the batlaks, after which he was hanged after brutal torture.

It should be stressed that the batlaks worked together with the Chechens and even chased up debts from entrepreneurs. It is said that State Duma deputy Adam Delimkhanov personally talked to those VIP persons who refused to “share” money. According to available information, Belkhoroev was friends with Chechen Head Ramzan Kadyrov.  

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Ibragim Belkhoroev and Ramzan Kadyrov.

It should be stressed that the murder of Ibragim Belkhoroev took place immediately after the information about him financing the local opposition leaked to media. He strongly interfered with one branch of the clan, which tried to introduce a scheme for legalizing assets obtained by criminal means, and also tried to conduct a dialogue on the purchase of positions for its people in the leadership of Ingushetia. When it became known that the opposition received Belkhoroev’s money, his plans for an “internal teip revolution” failed, as the teip had attracted additional attention from the authorities, and arrangements for the purchase of positions were no longer relevant. After that, Ibragim Belkhoroev gets killed. At the same time, his relatives immediately begin to suspect Head of the CCE, Ibrahim Eldzharkiev, of ordering a hit on Belkhoroev. However, there are no arguments or evidence that he was involved in it. The murder of the batlak leader has not yet been disclosed, despite the fact that the Batalkhadzhins announced a reward of 30 million rubles ($471,750) for any information relating to the December tragedy.

“Eldzharkiev dealt with the batlaks in Ingushetia. In late 2018, Ibragim Belkhoroev was killed. In the clan, they started talking about a possible involvement of Eldzharkiev in the incident. When traveling in the Republic, he always had strong guards. Unlike he did in Moscow. He’d better had. Given that Batyr Tumgoev had a lot of brigades specializing in armed assaults on money carriers, hijacking, and, on occasion, contract killings, in Moscow,” Telegram channels wrote.

Отметим, что Ибрагим Эльджаркиев находился в Москве под госохраной. Вот только ее роль (если представители таковой сопровождали Эльджаркиева в день убийства) неизвестна. Во всяком случае, никакой информации о том, где находились и что делали те, кому было доверено охранять высокопоставленного полицейского, пока не обнаружено. Данный факт, по имеющейся информации, может стать причиной громких отставок в МВД.

“We caught up with Ibragim in August. He was cheerful, purposeful, and full of life, as always. We are dealing with blood feud. Investigators know what to do. They are working,” Siloviki reports via Telegram.

In the Caucasus, an insult or a crime does not have a statute of limitations, and the consequences of this can appear after many years in the form of blood feud, which is transmitted even by inheritance.

According to eyewitnesses from Ingushetia, immediately after the news of the death of the CCE head, fireworks and automatic bursts were fired in the village of Ekazhevo, located near Nazran. Thus, the enemies of Ibragim Eldzharkiev met the news of his death. Members of the Belkhoroev clan live in this village, Eldzharkiev’s “blood enemies,” whom he considered a source of radicalism. In any case, the batlaks whose head was murdered represent a great threat. In the long run, the high-profile murder of the OCG leader created more problems and could very well have caused blood feud against Ibrahim Eldzharkiev.


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