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Russian Police Turn to ‘Name Profiling’ to Spot Criminals

Critics have questioned the reliability of criminal profiling. Pixabay

The Russian police force's official gazette has interviewed an expert who claims to be able to identify criminals based on their name, birth date and other traits. 

Psychologist Boris Khigir claims his method, which he says is based on personal observations and statistics, has an 80% accuracy rate. Critics have questioned the reliability of criminal profiling.

“I have a lie detector in my head which is fed with details such as a person’s name, patronymic and appearance,” Khigir said in a Feb. 26 interview with the Interior Ministry’s Petrovka 38 weekly.

Based on what he claims to be 30 years of research, Khigir says the most “criminal” name is Sergei.

“My data says that five out of 10 Sergeis could be criminals. Plus, these people are usually gay,” he told Petrovka 38.

The patronymics Nikolayevich, Igorevich, Anatolyevich and four other common names point to violent criminality, he said.

Additionally, the psychologist noted that “nearly the absolute majority of murderers and pedophiles have the O blood type.” 

Khigir’s interview “doesn’t mean that we support” his methods, Petrovka 38’s executive secretary Sergei Ostashev told the Open Media investigative website which first reported about the interview.

The Prosecutor General’s Office has previously described the average Russian criminal as a male between the ages 30 and 49 without a higher education and a stable source of income.

Last April, a Defense Ministry-run news magazine run claimed that the Russian military tested the telepathic effects of parapsychology in its wars in Chechnya in the 1990s and the early 2000s.

The techniques reportedly allowed soldiers to wiretap conversations, disrupt software, identify potential terrorists and read foreign-language documents locked in a safe — all using nothing but their minds. The expert community is divided on the existence of parapsychology capabilities in the military, the RBC news website reported last spring.

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