Russian Police Officers Rig Traffic Accident to Extort Driver

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Two police officers and their 19-year-old friend are suspects in a criminal investigation in the Kaluga area, about 180 kilometers southwest of Moscow. The men reportedly rigged a street corner to rope a passing driver into an accident.

They then extorted the driver, who the officers apparently knew was behind the wheel without a license, for 60,000 rubles (about $970), in exchange for their silence.

A few days later, however, the driver was pulled over again, and this time he was handcuffed to the steering wheel of his car. A man dressed as a police officer demanded another 60,000 rubles, threatening to plant illegal drugs in his vehicle and charge him with possession of narcotics.

The driver handed over 90,000 rubles in the end, which the three men apparently divided up equally. He then reported the extortion to higher authorities, who have charged the three men with extortion and abuse of power. The suspects later confessed to these crimes during police interrogation.

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