Police Detain Suspect in Killing of Russian Diplomat in Abkhazia

Police in Georgia have detained a man suspected in the killing of Dmitry Vishernev, the first secretary at the Russian Embassy in Abkhazia who was shot at close range while on his way to work.

A representative of the Investigative Committee's North Caucasus office told RIA Novosti that suspect Yusup Lakayev fled Abkhazia shortly after the attack on Vishernev and his wife Olga, who was sitting next to the diplomat in the car and died from her wounds at a local hospital.

Lakayev, a 25-year old man from Grozny, Chechnya, was injured and arrested last Friday during a separate incident involving an attack on a police officer in the Georgian city of Batumi.

The Investigative Committee is now working with Georgian authorities to extradite the suspect to Russia.

Lakayev had previously been convicted for aiding an armed militant group and was on a list of possible threats to the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, Izvestia reported.

A search of the suspect's apartment in Abkhazia found materials used to make homemade explosives, such as the kind that investigators believe were used to stop the Vishernevs' car as they were pulling out of a garage the morning of Sept. 9.

The day of the attack was the fifth anniversary of diplomatic relations between Russia and Abkhazia, which broke away from Georgia in 2008.

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