The Russian Orthodox Church in Argentina has come to the defense of an arrested cop in a massive drug bust at the Russian Embassy in Buenos Aires.
Russia and Argentina launched a joint operation after Moscow’s envoy alerted local authorities of finding 16 suitcases of cocaine hidden at the embassy school grounds in late 2016. Law enforcement officials said six people were arrested in a drug bust as part of the investigation last week, including an Argentine police officer of Russian descent named Ivan Bliznyuk.
The Russian Orthodox Church in the Argentinean port city of Mar del Plata said that Bliznyuk was a philanthropist who regularly donated to church causes and called him a victim of “provocation and real slander.”
“Many people were jealous of him inside the Russian Embassy in Argentina,” church rector Hieromonk Gerasim told the newspaper Nezavisimaya Gazeta on Wednesday.
“We will pray that the truth triumphs while the real intruders will be punished in all severity of the law,” Gerasim was cited as saying.