Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Russian Cops Take Down Security Officials for Planting Drugs on Teen

Vasily Kuzmichenok / TASS

Russian police have violently detained two National Guardsmen suspected of planting drugs on an underage victim in St. Petersburg and demanding a bribe, as seen in a video published by the Fontanka.ru news website.

Footage of the sting operation Tuesday showed plainclothes officers handcuffing the two men in National Guard uniforms and pressing them face-forward against a police car. 

Their takedown comes a month after the drug-trafficking arrest and release on insufficient evidence of investigative journalist Ivan Golunov in Moscow, which sparked nationwide outrage and the suspension of the police officers involved.

The two National Guardsmen reportedly stopped a 16-year-old on the street, planted him with drugs and then demanded a 300,000 ruble ($4,770) bribe, the local branch of the Investigative Committee said in a statement Wednesday. 

After taking the boy to an ATM machine and extracting part of the sum, they agreed to receive the second half at a specified location, the local Fontanka news website reported. The underaged victim notified the police, who detained the suspects when they came to pick up the bribe. 


“God forbid! They've fired generals in Moscow for this. We’ll all be done for,” the head of a St. Petersburg district anti-corruption police unit reportedly said after the victim told law enforcement about the alleged drug-planting setup.

National Guard members Nikita Lavrentyev, 26, and Alexander Boykov, 29, now face up to 12 years behind bars on bribe-taking charges.

Rosgvardia said it will conduct an internal inquiry into the case. 

“If found guilty, these employees will be dismissed and disciplinary actions will be brought against their superiors,” it told Fontanka.

A recent poll said that a majority of Russians believe that police routinely fabricate drug charges.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more