"Lawyer" of Dzhako’s gang got 6.5 years in prison
Former investigator Arkady Gabalov was found guilty of involvement in Aslan Gagiev’s (Dzhako) OCG, on the account of which there are about 60 murders, including of high-ranking officials and security forces officers.
The Presnensky Court of Moscow gave a sentence against former Deputy Head of the Department of the Investigative Committee at the Prosecutor’s Office in the North Ossetia Arkady Gabalov. As RBC reports, for Creation of a Criminal Community (Criminal Organisation) and Participation Therein (part 2 of Art. 210 of the Criminal Code), he was given 6.5 years in a general regime penal colony. The Court examined his case in a special order within a single day.
In the gang, to which Gabalov joined in 2010, he served as a regular lawyer, whose task was to sort out the problems of the gang members with the law. Using the old ties, he cooperated with law enforcement authorities in North Ossetia, as well as in Moscow and the Moscow Region. Passing large sums of money to the police through mediators, he received information from them about the investigation against the gang members.
Initially, the former investigator was charged under another article: Promise or Proposal to Mediate in Bribery (part 5 of Article 291 of the Criminal Code), but due to the fact that he made a pre-trial agreement, his case was reclassified. But his testimony helped investigate other serious crimes. In particular, in the summer of this year, Chief of the 4th Operational-Investigative Part of the MIA Criminal Investigation Directorate in the Moscow Region Vadim Shavlokhov, suspected of protection racket of the gang, was arrested.
In addition to the OCG’s assignments, as noted the Prosecutor at the trial, Gabalov also pursued personal interests. In particular, out of revenge, with the help of bribes, he was trying to shift the Deputy Minister and Minister of the North Ossetia MIA from their positions. The defendant dismissed these charges. His lawyer Yevgeny Klimov said in an interview that the motive of revenge did not figure in the charge throughout the investigation, which lasted for more than two years, and it is unclear why it (the motive) emerged today. The defense plans to appeal the decision in the Moscow City Court.
It is to be noted that Gabalov for many years worked in the North Ossetia’s Prosecutor's Office, and then moved to the Investigative Committee becoming the Deputy Chief of the national investigative agency. On duty, he participated in the investigation of high-profile series of murders (in 2008, Chief of the Regional MIA Department for Organized Crime Control Mark Metsayev, Chief of Criminal Investigation Department of the republican MIA Vitaly Cheldiev, Mayor of Vladikavkaz Vitaly Karaev and Deputy Prime Minister of North Ossetia Kazbek Pagiev and his driver Vladimir Gasiev were killed). It is noteworthy that in all murders the Gagiev’s OCG members are accused. And it was during the investigation, as suggested by the investigators, Gabalov got acquainted with Dzako, after which he retired from the authorities and joined the ranks of criminals.
The criminal community of about 45 people started its activity in 2004. It is credited with killing 60 people, including senior officials and security forces officers. To date, many of the members of the gang have been sentenced to prison terms. However, the leader of the brutal gang is located in Austria, where he was arrested in early 2015, but was not extradited to Russia.
According to the Russian MIA’s spokesperson, Maria Zakharova, the detention of Russian woman Maria Butina in the US was specifically timed to coincide with the summit of Putin and Trump in order to minimize the effect of the presidents’ meeting.