The Second Western District Military Court sentenced former employees of the Krasnodar Main Directorate (GU) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Maxim Kotomanov and Dmitry Krasilnikov to 17 and 14 years in prison, respectively. They were accused of sending letters to the embassies of foreign states, poisoned with poisonous chloride mercury instead of the Crimean soil.
In the 2nd Western District Military Court, a verdict was passed in the case of Maxim Kotomanov and Dmitry Krasilnikov, accused by the FSB Directorate for Moscow and the region of committing crimes under Part 3 of Art. 234 (illegal traffic in poisonous substances); Art. 30 and h. 1 of Art. 360 (preparation of attacks against persons or institutions that enjoy international protection); h. 3 tbsp. 226.1 (smuggling of potent or poisonous substances); h. 2 tbsp. 205.4 (participation in a terrorist community) and Art. 30 and part 2 of Art. 205 (preparation of terrorist attacks using toxic substances) of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation.
According to the prosecution, the defendant Kotomanov in late 2017 – early 2018 prepared about 200 letters to the embassies, other diplomatic missions, as well as the leaders of the European Union and NATO, which included a letter on a fake letterhead from State Duma deputy Sergei Zheleznyak with an invitation to a festive event dedicated to the return of the Crimean peninsula to the Russian Federation.
However, instead of earth, according to experts, crystals of mercury chloride, which is a toxic substance, darkening in the air, were placed in the envelopes.
In February 2018, letters with suspicious powder were received by about two dozen embassies, while a significant part of the envelopes were intercepted by employees of the Russian Post during sorting.
As a result, both former employees of the Krasnodar head office of the Ministry of Internal Affairs were found guilty. The court sentenced Kotomanov to 17 years in a maximum security colony, Krasilnikov to 14 years in a maximum security colony.