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Russian ‘Thief-in-Law’ Shot Dead in Moscow Gym

Ali Heydarov Screenshot YouTube

Ali Heydarov, a Russian “thief-in-law” known as Albert Ryzhiy, was shot dead in a northwest Moscow gym Monday afternoon, Interfax reported

“Thief-in-law” is a Russian term referring to powerful members of the criminal underworld.

Security camera footage published by the news website shows Heydarov using an elliptical as an unknown man enters the gym, shoots at him and then leaves. 

Heydarov died at the scene, Interfax reported. 

The Moscow department of Russia’s Investigative Committee said it has opened a criminal case into murder and illegal arms trafficking following the incident. It did not specify the victim’s name.

A native of Ganja, Azerbaijan, Heydarov began his criminal career in Russia’s Arkhangelsk region in the mid-1990s, carrying out robberies and thefts as part of an organized criminal group. According to Interfax, he later joined the criminal clan of influential “thief-in-law” Aslan Usoyan ("Ded Hasan”), who himself was shot and killed in central Moscow in 2013.

In 2016, a St. Petersburg court sentenced Heydarov to seven years in prison for extortion. According to the Baza Telegram channel, he was the first convicted “thief-in-law” to be released on parole when he was released last summer.

The St. Petersburg-based news website reported that there had been three previous attempts on Heydarov's life.

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