Three defendants shot dead in Russian court during murder trial

Aug 03, 2017, 00:44
Three defendants shot dead in Russian court during murder trial

It was not immediately clear how the handcuffed men managed tto free themselves to attack the guards.

In a freakish twist to the case, Russian investigators said that one of the gang leaders arrested in late 2014 had rented a house from a senior official in the Russian prosecutor's office and used the property to store arms and ammunition. She said the other four defendants facing charges in the same criminal case were in a separate room when the incident happened.

Three of the defendants were killed and two wounded in a shootout with the court's guards. Russian state television showed the footage of the blooded bodies spread in a courthouse corridor.

Instead, there were only two guards for the entire group, according to the Moscow Investigative Committee.

The suspected gangsters overpowered the armed guards, stole their firearms and opened fire in a Moscow court.

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"They beat me with their fists. They have gunshot wounds of medium degree of gravity", the spokesman said. The Moscow Region prosecutor's office launched an inquiry into the incident to establish whether standards of escorting high-risk suspects were met. The gangs who are hailing from Central Asia are charged with 17 murders and two attempted murders.

They were dubbed the "Grand Theft Auto" gang by Russian media over apparent similarities with the ultra-violent video game.

The three defendants were accused of terrorizing drivers in Moscow by disabling motorists' cars with spikes placed on roads, and then shooting the drivers.

The gang's suspected leader was killed during an attempt to capture him.

In November 2014 the Investigative Committee reported arresting the supposed gang members.