The Higher Regional Court in Munich sentenced Valid Dadakaev to 10 years in prison, finding him guilty of organizing an assassination attempt on a Chechen opposition leader in Germany. Mohmad (Muhammad) Abdurakhmanov, brother of the famous blogger Tumso Abdurakhmanov. The sentencing of the criminal case, the hearing of which began more than a year ago, on June 15, 2022, took place on Thursday, August 31, under enhanced security measures. The murder was prepared “with the knowledge, approval and in the interests” of the head of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrovsaid Judge Christoph Wiesner presiding over the trial, transmits dpa.
Kavkaz.Realii, 03/12/2021, “Disliked by the Kadyrov regime. Muhammad Abdurakhmanov – about the attempt on his life”: The murder of human rights activist Muhammad Abdurakhmanov, brother of opposition YouTube blogger Tumso Abdurakhmanov, failed in Germany. […] According to him, the organization of the assassination was entrusted to Pakhrudi Edilgiriev, cousin of the head of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov. As Tumso said, Edilgiriev found an intermediary living in Germany – Valid Dadakaev – and handed over the money to him. Dadakaev bought a Makarov pistol for the murder from his relative, Roman Tsakaev. The latter was already known to Tumso for recording insults against him in 2019. Weapons Dadakaev smuggled to Germany. However, there, on the spot, the plan fell through: Tamerlan Aurbiev, a potential killer whom Edilgiriev found, confessed to his victim and revealed his criminal plans. — Inset K.ru
After the verdict was announced, the defendant’s lawyers said they intended to appeal against it. Johanna Künne, Mohmad Abdurakhmanov’s lawyer, told DW that she welcomed the court’s decision. Abdurakhmanov, who, as a victim, joined the charges brought by the prosecutor, also welcomed the court’s decision. “I should have been killed because my brother Tumso Abdurakhmanov and I publicly criticize the Russian regime in Chechnya,” he said after the verdict was announced.
The killer who refused the order
In Europe, in recent years there have been several successful assassination attempts on Chechen refugees who openly opposed Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov. Back in 2019, the current leadership of the republic announced a “blood feud” against Tumso Abdurakhmanov, who criticizes Kadyrov’s policies and has about 475,000 subscribers on his Youtube channel. The success of the operation to eliminate Tumso’s brother Mohmad, as it turned out, was hindered by the killer himself.
Tamerlan A., a native of the Chechen Republic, arrived in Germany in the fall of 2020 and applied for asylum. In fact, as the court found out, Tamerlan ended up in Germany to commit the murder of Mokhmad Abdurakhmanov. Here, the organizer of the crime, Valid Dadakaev, was already waiting for him.
As the court found, between March and June 2020, he received an order from Kadyrov’s cousin to physically eliminate Mokhmad Abdurakhmanov and acquired the necessary small arms. Together with Tamerlan A., they studied Mohmad’s place of residence in southern Germany, in Bavaria. Tamerlan A., as established by the court, refused to carry out the task, referring to the fact that the retreat route, which lay through a cornfield, was too unsafe.
In the meantime, he contacted via the Internet with the one who was supposed to be his victim, and let him in on the assassination plans. The investigation is sure that Tamerlan A. was not going to fulfill the order for the murder. Later, he cooperated with the investigation, he managed to take his family out of Chechnya, today he is a participant in the German authorities’ witness protection program.
German intelligence informer, but not only
Found guilty by the Higher Regional Court in Munich, Valid Dadakaev is a 49-year-old car dealer who traveled regularly between Germany and Russia, and more specifically Chechnya. The court established that Valid, who has been living in Germany for more than twenty years, was hired to kill Ramzan Kadyrov’s cousin.
With the money received for the operation from Chechnya, Walid purchased a Makarov pistol, a silencer and cartridges from his relative. How the weapon got to Germany, the investigation failed to find out: Dadakaev himself claims that he does not know at all how the gun ended up in his house, although the German special services are sure that Walid has a cache of firearms somewhere.
Further, the story of an unsuccessful attempt includes a scandalous for Germany episode. Valid Dadakaev was an informant for the Office for the Protection of the Constitution (VfS) of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, thanks to which the German special services knew that the latter had “access to Kadyrov.” It is possible that Dadakaev was a double agent, although the court could not establish this. But it was possible to establish for sure that his curator, an employee of the VfS of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, who had already been removed from his post, gave Walid the exact address of Mohmad’s residence.
The case against a German intelligence officer
Suspicion of complicity on the part of a VfS employee made the criminal process in the case of the attempted assassination of Mokhmad Abdurakhmanov different from others: increased security measures, double control at the entrance, closed mode of most court hearings. The name of the officer who leaked Mohmad’s address was not named at the trial: he went by the pseudonym “Peter Graf” or “witness Peter”. The same applied to four of his colleagues who were invited to court hearings.
“Cooperation” between Valid Dadakaev and the German special services was not limited to the case of the assassination attempt on Mohmad Abdurakhmanov. It turns out that back in 2020, prosecutors conducted searches for two days at the headquarters of the Office for the Protection of the Constitution of the federal state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. A criminal case has been opened against a suspected VfS employee on suspicion of corruption and the issuance of official secrets.
At one of the meetings, details were revealed that should cause great concern, the newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung wrote: a passport photo and Vadim Krasikov’s fingerprints were found in Valid Dadakaev’s mobile phone. They appeared in the smartphone just two weeks after Krasikov shot dead the former Chechen field commander Zelimkhan Khangoshvili in the very center of Berlin.
In October 2020, the Higher Regional Court in Berlin found Krasikov guilty of a political murder committed on the instructions of the Russian authorities and sentenced him to life imprisonment. At the time of the discovery of Krasikov’s passport photo and fingerprints, such information from the operational investigation could only be available to the German security services.
The victim Mokhmad Abdurakhmanov, commenting on the role of the German special services after the verdict was announced, said that he was “shocked by the role played in this case by the department for the protection of the constitution of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. But since the collection of evidence on this topic took place behind closed doors without public access I can’t comment on this topic.”
Mohmad Abdurakhmanov hopes he will finally receive refugee status
Like his brother Tumso, Mokhmad Abdurakhmanov was forced to leave Chechnya back in 2015. Since then he has been unsuccessful asks the German authorities grant him asylum. Twice the request was rejected. Instead, Mohmad faced an administrative penalty for reposting DW’s article, which he was able to successfully challenge through the court.
Only in 2021, by a court decision, the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) began to re-examine the repeated asylum application for Mohmad Abdurakhmanov and his family. But after plans were revealed to assassinate him and the criminal process began, the decision was postponed until the verdict was announced. Mohmad and his lawyer now hope that a decision on asylum will be made soon.