A former Siberian policeman who is one of Russia's most notorious serial killers has been given a second life sentence based on evidence that he killed dozens of more women than considered in his initial conviction, Interfax reported on Monday.
Mikhail Popkov was sentenced to life in prison in 2015 for the murder of 22 women in Siberia, many of whom he raped and whose bodies he mutilated while serving as a local member of law enforcement. Popkov was first arrested in 2012 after forensic evidence linked his DNA to a victim's body.
A court in the city of Irkutsk sentenced Popkov to a second life sentence on Monday for 60 additional murders of women and one murder of a police officer, Interfax reported. His killing spree took place between 1994 and 2010 near the Siberian town of Angarsk where he served as a police officer until his resignation in 1998.
Dozens of women between the ages of 17 and 38 went missing in Angarsk during that period, abducted from public areas in the evening or at night. Their bodies, usually naked and with signs of rape, were later found around local forests, at cemeteries or by the roadside.
Popkov claimed during his first sentencing that he had intended to "clean" Angarsk of “women leading a promiscuous lifestyle.”
The court on Monday also ruled for Popkov to be stripped of his police rank of junior lieutenant, for which he had continued receiving pension payouts while in jail.
According to state prosecutor Alexander Shkinev, Popkov intends to appeal his latest conviction.