Investigative Committee of Russia Boosts Anatoly Bykov's Popularity

Investigative Committee of Russia Boosts Anatoly Bykov's Popularity


Anatoly Bykov, a well-known politician and public figure from Krasnoyarsk, is facing a new charge. He is under an accusation of heading a criminal community, the Investigative Committee of Russia said in a report on July 13. On July 16, the court of the Krasnoyarsk territory finally decided that Anatoly Bykov would stay in the detention center until early October.

The new accusation is added to the previous charges of two contract murders committed back in the 1990s. According to the investigation, two “fighters” from Bykov's inner circle, who started showing excessive ambition, were killed. The law enforcers have voiced a conclusion that has been long known to everyone. Anatoly Bykov, the former owner of the Krasnoyarsk Aluminum Smelter, controlled criminal life in the city for many years.

“From 1993 to 1995, Bykov united criminal gangs around him, including those led by Vilor Struganov and Vladimir Tatarenkov,” said the official report of the Investigative Committee of Russia. “In order to maintain internal discipline, safety and conspiracy, he introduced uniform rules of conduct and sanctions for violations. Bykov coordinated criminal activity, created stable relations between organized crime groups, set the stage for committing crimes, and divided the spheres of influence and criminal revenues.”

At present, Struganov and Tatarenkov, the defendants in the case, are serving long terms. Vladimir Tatarenkov is to be released soon. Law enforcement agencies call him the staff liquidator in Bykov's gang. It is his testimony that the charges against Bykov himself are based on. Tatarenkov explained his honesty by the fact that over 20 years he spent in prison he never got any help from Anatoly Bykov for not “grassing him up.” That is why he decided to disclose what had happened.

However, this story is hard to believe given its background. Back in 1999, when Anatoly Bykov was in the midst of a conflict with Alexander Lebed, then governor of the Krasnoyarsk region, Tatarenkov, who was detained abroad, became part of a large PR campaign against Bykov. Tatarenkov recorded the video address where he directly accused Bykov of the murders saying that he had committed them on Bykov’s orders. In particular, local crime bosses known as Lyapa, Tolmach and Siny were killed. As the enforcers of the old code of criminals, they were against the sudden spike of Bykov's status, and that is why they were punished.

That is, after the statements of this kind, one could hardly count on any help on special favors from Bykov. Consequently, now and then, Tatarenkov's revelations surprisingly coincided with the criminal intelligence analysis related to Bykov. Politics is the most obvious answer to the question on what this is all about. Bykov has a suspended sentence for preparing an assassination attempt. Interestingly, the murder of Vilor Struganov turned out to be staged by the secret services. However, Anatoly Bykov still got into the “criminal filter.” Law bans him from running for elected offices for a period of 15 years as a previously convicted person. But this term ended in April this year.

As wrote earlier, in recent months, Anatoly Bykov got tough on the current authorities, both local and federal. But now his opposition-mindedness is obviously growing, up to the intention to establish some Siberian political party for fighting Moscow's “colonial policy.” Certainly, this was a clear overreaction from his side. The Kremlin is extremely sensitive even to the slightest signs of separatism.

“He was told 15 years ago – just don't stick your head out, do charity and all your discreditable practices will be forgotten,” a source in the law enforcement agencies told “All the more so because it is much more difficult to unravel these practices. This might tarnish many regional politicians, deputies and businessmen who were associated with Bykov. It is naive to believe that the law enforcers had no information about who, where and when had been buried on his instructions, or that Tatarenkov has whispered this information to their ear only now, without any visible reason. He disclosed it long ago, and not only he. Everybody already knew the place where to tip off. It is no longer a secret that Bykov had a very serious сОver in the police. Don’t you think that he managed to survive in the wild 1990s without a single scratch solely thanks to his business acumen and luck? However, times change. Moreover, Bykov has gone too far. Apparently, he believes he is people’s savior.”

“Back in April, when Bykov's restriction on participation in the elections was expiring, everybody expected that something of this kind might happen,” said Oleg Pashchenko, a former deputy from the legislative assembly. “To my thinking, it’s unlikely that the arrest was approved at the regional level. Ambitious people in the regions are plucked out to clear the way.”

It should be added that Anatoly Bykov might get a life sentence as a result of the charges.

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