Two defendants charged with 1995 attack on Budyonnovsk

The North Caucasian Federal District Directorate of the Russia’s Investigative Committee continues investigation in an armed attack of Shamil Basayev’s gang on the people of Budyonnovsk, Stavropol Region in 1995.

According to investigators, in 1991, Shamil Basayev and other individuals set up a criminal community to plot and commit armed riots and terrorist attacks in Russia for the purpose of forcible change of constitutional regime of the Russian Federation and violation of its territorial unity set out in the Constitution, to affect state authorities so that they would change the country’s constitutional regime, violation of its territory unity by illegally withdrawing from it North Caucasian region and form there a new Islamic state.

On 14 June 1995, the stable armed group of at least 160 people led by Shamil Basayev attacked organizations and citizens of Budyonnovsk in the Stavropol Territory, took hostages and carried out a terrorist attack. As a result of the attack, 129 people were killed, 317 injured, 1,191 citizens sustained moral damage, 1,586 citizens were taken hostages. 198 cars were destroyed or damaged, the fire damaged the House of Children’s Art, buildings of central district hospital, department of internal affairs, city administration, 107 houses were considerably damaged, property owned by legal or physical persons was destroyed or damaged, that is considerable property damage was inflicted, over 95.6 billion of non-denominated rubles.

At the present time the North Caucasian Federal District Main Investigations Directorate are prosecuting two nationals of the Chechen Republic Ramzan Belyalov and magomed Mazdayev. They are charged with crimes under part 2 of article 209 of the RF Penal Code (membership in a gang), part 2 of article 126.1 of the RSFSR Penal Code (taking hostages), part 3 of article 205 of the RF penal Code (terrorist attack).

Both of the defendants hid from investigators for a long time. However, thanks to coherent actions of operative services Magomed mazdayev was detained in December 2014, in Volgograd Region and Ramzan Belyalov on 2 June 2015, in the Chechen Republic. All investigative and search operations strictly followed the RF Criminal Procedure Code. The accused refused to testify resorting to article 51 of the Russian Constitution, They were remanded in custody. Their involvement in the events of 1995 is confirmed by witnesses’ statements. The investigators are analyzing the video records of the events again in order to find faces of the accused there and are running forensic tests.

In all, 26 people were charged during the investigation, criminal files against them were severed to form a separate proceeding and sent to the Stavropol Territory Court to be tried on the merits. Criminal cases against 3 of the accused were investigated by investigators of the Russia’s Investigative Committee. All members of the gang were found guilty and sentenced to long terms in prison. Investigation against Shamil Basayev and 6 more of his accomplices was stopped due to their deaths. There are 23 individuals still wanted for the crime.

The investigation was complicated because most of the current convicts, wanting to escape criminal liability for their crimes, illegally received and used Russian passports. However, they were still identified and brought to justice.

The investigators have done a lot of work to get the evidence. This way, each time they need to identify the accused, they have to locate the victims (1,600), question them once more to find out all the circumstances of the events and whether they can describe or identify the perpetrators. Complex tests are being run.

Head of Media Relations                                                                                                                             V.I. Markin