According to the Russian Criminal Code, the intentional killing of another human is considered murder, and is punishable by varying prison terms. So last week, in the course of Russian justice, authorities sentence Siberian politician and businessman Anatoly Bykov to 13 years in prison for ordering the deaths of two members of the mob.
In any other country, it would seem the letter of the law was followed, that justice prevailed for the families of Bykov’s victims. But this is Russia; a land ruled by a regime of crime, violence, and murder. The Russian president disposes of anyone who threatens, criticizes, and differs with the Kremlin and its allies. Countless hits are carried out all the time on behalf of powerful Russians. So why punish Bykov for doing what everyone in his position does?
It should come as no surprise that Bykov and the Kremlin have been at odds for some time. Bykov ordered the assassinations in 1994, before Putin’s mafia rule. The murders were therefore unsanctioned by Russia’s Godfather. Worse, the powerful Siberian challenged Putin himself in the open media over the past few years.
State retribution has been swift and sweeping. In addition to being convicted of murder by Europe’s most murderous state, earlier this year, Bykov was charged with tax evasion. These financial accusations come from same state that drives resources from its own citizens to launder Putin’s fortune.
So, as Bykov learned last week, murder IS illegal in Russia. As long as your name or your friend isn’t Vladimir Putin.