Immediately, two citizens of Venezuela were put on the international wanted list for disseminating deliberately false information about the use of the Russian Armed Forces during a special operation in Ukraine. According to investigators, the Latin Americans were part of a criminal group that, for a reward in cryptocurrency, spread fakes through mailings by phone and social networks. One of its members has already been convicted.
The Basmanny District Court arrested Venezuelan citizens Salazar Ramirez and Mendoza Briceno in absentia at the request of the investigator for especially important cases to investigate cybercrimes and crimes in the field of high technologies of the department for the investigation of certain types of crimes of the Main Investigation Department of the TFR. Both are accused in absentia of committing a crime under paragraph “b”, “d” part 2 of Art. 207.3 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (dissemination of deliberately false information about the use of the Russian Armed Forces).
Initially, the person involved in the investigation was a citizen of Colombia, Alberto Enrique Giraldo Saraya, who was detained by the investigators of the Main Investigative Committee of the ICR and FSB operatives back in April last year. Recently, the accused, who has been living in Russia for more than twenty years, was sentenced by the Golovinsky District Court of Moscow to five years and two months in a penal colony.
Meanwhile, as follows from the decision of the investigator of the Main Investigative Committee of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, materials were separated from the original case in November in relation to two Venezuelans who had already left Russia. Both were put on the federal and then, in February of this year, the international wanted list, and in order to connect Interpol to it, the defendants were arrested in absentia on May 17 by the Basmanny Court for two months from the date of extradition to Russia.
According to the Main Investigative Directorate of the ICR, all three foreigners and a number of other persons unidentified by the investigation made money in Russia by providing SMS mailing services.
Before the start of the special operation, completely legal companies acted as clients of the Latin Americans, but then orders began to come from abroad, including from Ukraine.
As a result, instead of offers of loans and access to inexpensive fitness, thousands of people began to receive reports of crimes allegedly committed by the Russian military in Ukraine.
Read more about the case of a Colombian citizen convicted of spreading fakes about SVO
Appointed lawyers opposed even arrests of foreigners in absentia, noting that the charges against them were unlawful and unfounded. The investigation, in turn, provided the court with data, according to which the involvement of the accused in the alleged crime is confirmed by the testimony of other defendants, protocols of inspections of electronic media, including those containing information about mass mailings of SMS messages, their correspondence with accomplices, information about the movement of funds on accounts and transactions of digital currencies, the conclusions of linguistic forensic examinations and other evidence.
At the same time, it should be noted that Interpol, as a rule, does not comply with Russian requests in connection with crimes related to armed conflict. However, Ukraine is also facing a similar position of the international police.
The latter even sought the exclusion of the Russian Federation from the organization, but the corresponding proposal was rejected by the Interpol General Assembly.