Following the violent death of a 5-year-old Russian orphan in Italy, his adoptive Italian father has admitted to having killed the boy, according to Russian Children's Rights Ombudsman Pavel Astakhov.
"Massimo Maravelle, who is suspected of having murdered his 5-year-old adoptive son Maxim Kichigin, admitted to the murder during his interrogation," Astakhov wrote on Instagram on Wednesday.
Kichigin died on the night of July 17 in Pescara, Italy. Several Russian media outlets have reported that he was strangled.
Maravalle is thought to have suffered from a psychological illness that had not been disclosed during the adoption process, which was completed in 2012, according to Italian authorities.
According to Astakhov, Maravelle's lawyers said their client had confessed to the crime, blaming a mental illness for which he had stopped taking medication.
The Investigative Committee for the Amur region, where Kichigin was born, opened a criminal case and is investigating members of the local government for "negligence in processing [adoption] documents," according to a statement released Sunday.
Astakhov proposed Monday, in the direct aftermath of the child's death, that foreigners wishing to adopt Russian children should be subjected to psychological testing in Russia.