Accomplice of St.Petersburg smugglers in uniform jailed for 3 years

Accomplice of St.Petersburg smugglers in uniform jailed for 3 years
Photo: Leningrad Region ICR

Konstantin Dankov was found guilty of illegal arms trafficking from the European Union.

The Nevsky District Court of St. Petersburg found local resident Konstantin Dankov guilty of Illegal Arms Trafficking and its Manufacture (part 1 and part 3 of Article 222 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation and part 3 of Article 223 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). He was jailed for three years in a colony of general regime, according to a Telegram channel of the joint press service of St. Petersburg courts.

The court found that Dankov was involved in a group of smugglers in uniform, who bought arms and ammunition in the EU countries in 2015, and then sold them in Russia. In addition to Dankov, former Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia officer Mikhail Svetlov, his son Leonid Svetlov, ex-Russian Special Police Force officer Mikhail Moshkin, as well as St. Petersburg residents Maxim Romanov, Pavel Peshkov and Dmitry Bogdanov are on trial in the case. They were detained in August 2015. In August, it became known that Bogdanov pleaded guilty and concluded a pre-trial agreement.

The Dankov’s case was separated, as he concluded a pre-trial agreement with the investigation. It is specified that in addition to smuggling weapons Dankov was engaged in its repair.

According to the investigation, gang members bought weapons in Slovakia. An employee of one of the Bratislava arms stores paid a fee of EUR 50 to deactivate the weapon by inserting a hairpin into the barrel, so that it was given the status of a "weapon for firing dummy cartridge". This allowed members of the gang to move freely across the EU without obtaining a special permit. Then, at the border of Russia and Estonia in Narva, the group members handed over weapons to the disadvantaged groups of the border areas who, without inspection, carried it to Russia for a fee of 10 euros per barrel.

The mediators hid the weapons in caches. Smugglers entered Russia without weapons, and then drew them upon from the caches. Ready-to-sell barrels were stored at home, at work and in a car at Svetlov. Bogdanov was an intermediary in the transfer of weapons, Dankov repaired it, and Moshkin, Romanov and Peshkov sold. The cost of one weapon unit ranged from 100 to 150 thousand rubles ($1750-2600), depending on the type and model.

During the searches, members of the gang seized more than 100 firearms, including the Glock, Walter, Browning, Beretta pistols, the Suomi and RM-73 submachine guns, the M rifles-39 and Mauser and much more. Ammunition, grenades, explosives and explosive devices were also seized from the smugglers.

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