The double murder of Russian oligarchs Vladislav Avayev and Sergey Protosenya in the space of 48 hours has raised concerns. Avayev, 51, was a former Kremlin official as well as the former vice president of Gazprombank and he was found dead along with his 47-year-old pregnant wife Yelena and 13-year-old daughter Maria last week. the Newsweek news agency said in a report.
The other oligarch, Protosenya, was found dead in his luxurious villa in the Spanish coastal town of Lloret de Mar. The 55-year-old, who was the former vice-president of Novatek, was also found dead with his Natalia, 53 years old. and his 18-year-old daughter, Maria.
Initial reports cited by Newsweek and Spanish media suggest the women at the luxury villa in Protosenya were stabbed and the former gas company deputy director died by suicide as he was found hanged in the garden.
Avayev also allegedly killed his wife and teenage daughter with a gun and later killed himself based on a preliminary investigation.
European security agencies are concerned about whether it is indeed a double homicide or a set-up organized by the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB).
Spanish investigators told local news agency El Punt Avui there may be inconsistencies in the murder scene as they said they did not find any traces of blood on Protosenya. However, they haven’t officially confirmed anything yet.
The murders also come a week after Russian President Vladimir Putin attacked pro-European Russian oligarchs. “I don’t judge those who have villas in Miami or on the Côte d’Azur. Or those who can’t do without oysters or foie gras or so-called “gender freedoms”. The problem is that they mentally exist there and not here, with our people, with Russia,” Putin said following which Newsweek reported that there was an exodus of private jets from Moscow as Putin also called for a “self-purification” of Russia.
Meanwhile, speaking to Sky News Australia, one of Avayev’s neighbors said the former Kremlin official was incapable of such horrific acts. He also said in his report that a total of 13 weapons were found inside the 14th floor luxury apartment.
In both cases, the bodies were discovered by their surviving children. Avayev’s 26-year-old daughter Anastasia found their bodies in Moscow while Protosenya’s son living in France sounded the alarm after failing to contact his parents.
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