The Vostochnye Stories portal has released an investigation claiming that several FSB divisions are engaged in the "development" of Alexei Navalny in Russia, which specialize in repressions against people unwanted by the Kremlin. The specifics of the work of these units indicate that the operation to poison him could have been approved personally by Russian President Vladimir Putin, the article says.
According to journalists, for more than ten years, total surveillance has been installed for Navalny, his colleagues and friends, which includes external surveillance, but also covert penetration into the premises they visit, wiretapping, hacking of e-mails and opening bank cells. For the first time, the oppositionist got into the development of the Russian special services around 2008-2010 as a blogger talking about corruption in the Russian state-owned companies Gazprom and Rosneft.
In his investigations, Navalny used the "greenmail" tactic: a person acquires a small block of shares in a company, and then, using his right as a minority shareholder, demands disclosure of documents on transactions and decisions made by management, and in case of refusal, sues. This tactic is not illegal in itself, but attracted the attention of the sixth department of the "K" FSB, given that these companies are controlled by people close to the president of the Russian Federation.
- "Kiriyenko knows about Novichok more than any other official in the Russian Federation"
At first, the main task of the sixth department was to find out the sources of funding for Navalny: one of the "large" payments that the special services were able to find was a donation of 300 thousand rubles from an employee of the Alfa Group, Vladimir Ashurkov. The FSB decided that Alfa Group also finances Navalny himself, and he himself is allegedly a "project" of the former deputy head of the presidential administration Vladislav Surkov, with whom the founder of Alfa Group Mikhail Fridman is friends. As a result, Ashurkov resigned from the company, and the FSB's theory was not confirmed.
Subsequently, the sixth department accompanied almost all criminal cases against Alexei Navalny and his colleagues from the FBK, including the well-known "Kirovles case": according to the authors of the material, the decision to first sentence Alexey Navalny and Pyotr Ofitserov to real terms of imprisonment, and then replace them with suspended sentences The same applies to the "Yves Rocher case", in which Navalny was again convicted on probation, and his brother Oleg was sentenced to five years in a general regime colony.
In 2015, the same sixth department was involved in the so-called "painting business", in which several FBK employees were accused of stealing a poster posted by a janitor on the fence of a street in the city of Vladimir: during the investigation, telephone conversations of at least ten FBK employees were tapped. And in 2016, an operative of the sixth department of department "K" was engaged in opening a bank cell of the former director of FBK Roman Rubanov.
Department "K" is part of the Economic Security Service (SEB) of the FSB and is considered one of the most powerful and influential units of the special service. It oversees the entire credit and financial sphere of Russia, the insurance market, customs and tax authorities. Another of his tasks, according to journalists, was to "supervise" the administration of the President of Russia, which really means reprisals against officials who disagree with the Kremlin's policies. This was most clearly manifested in the case of Alexander Shestun, head of the Serpukhov district of the Moscow region, in 2018. Also, the sixth department accompanied the criminal cases against Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Boris Berezovsky.
At the same time, according to the law enforcement officers who worked on the cases against Alexei Navalny, over time, the sixth department "decayed" and lost its former influence. At the same time, another division of the FSB, the Directorate for Combating Terrorism and Political Extremism (UBTPE), took over the development of Navalny. On the one hand, real fighters against terrorism work as part of this unit, in particular, those who took part in solving the murder of Novaya Gazeta employees Anastasia Baburova and Stanislav Markelov, on the other hand, some of its departments, according to journalists, turned into "suppression bodies dissidents ", and the UBTPE employees have been repeatedly involved in scandalous stories related to physical violence. Nevertheless, the leadership of the UBTPE remains in good standing in the presidential administration.
“Over the past 10 years, so much effort and resources have been devoted to the development of Alexei Navalny and his colleagues from the FBK, which, perhaps, was not spent on catching the most dangerous terrorists. there were clear signs of falsification of evidence and abuse of law by the state. All this - as well as the chosen method of reprisals against Alexei Navalny - leaves no doubt about who is behind the attempted murder, "the authors of the material conclude.