ROSTOV-ON-DON — A spate of bomb hoaxes at schools across Russia is down to teenagers who want the time off to play online games, police said.
"Teenagers aged under 17 living in various Russian cities have been involved in bomb reports," the Rostov region's police department said in a statement Thursday.
They are linked by online gaming, the statement said, adding that they trade tips about how best to skip school while playing online.
Five schools in the city of Taganrog have had 10 bomb hoaxes in less than a year, the statement said.
Ten criminal cases into "deliberately false reports on an act of terrorism" have been opened in Taganrog. The perpetrators could face up to three years in prison or fines.
The regional Federal Security Service branch said that the teenagers used Skype and voice-disguising technology, to communicate.