“Duma member, philanthropist, descended from renowned family of farmers”: Ombudsman covers Tsepovyaz

“Duma member, philanthropist, descended from renowned family of farmers”: Ombudsman covers Tsepovyaz
Tsepovyaz and his partners in crime in court

The social activist has blamed the media of overblowing the scandal over the convict.

The chairperson of the public monitoring commission in Amur region Natalia Okhotnikova has spoken up for Viacheslav Tsepovyaz convicted in a Tsapki gang case who found himself in the crosshairs over the publication of pictures showing him eating delicacies in the colony. Okhotnikova has posted on her Instagram blaming the media of overblowing the scandal over the convict. 

The head of the public monitoring commission in Amur region has called the convict “a well-known entrepreneur, a legitimized Duma member, and a philanthropist who descended from a renowned family of farmers.” She emphasized that Tsepovyaz had not taken part in the murder of 12 persons in a stanitsa (large village) of Kushchevskaya when the gang’s members were arrested. Okhotnikova said that no person was harmed from his actions. In her words, the information on Tsepovyaz that is being spread in the media is “an odious lie.”

The media had earlier posted the pictures of Tsepovyaz posing at the colony’s table with the crab meat and caviar and preparing barbecue. The Federal Penal Correction Service confirmed the authenticity of the pictures. The convict’s ex-wife stated that she had spent 3 million rubles ($44.3 thousand) a year to support her ex-husband in the prison. Tsepovyaz stated that some of the pictures had been faked, and others had been made on the colony’s doors open day. 

Viacheslav Tsepovyaz was sentenced to 19 years and 10 months of imprisonment in the Tsapki gang case in 2013. The gang headed by its leader Sergey Tsapok operated in the stanitsa of Kushchevskaya in Krasnodar region from 1998 to 2010. The victims were 19 persons including children.

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