Accessibility links

Breaking News

Pretrial Jail Time Prolonged Into February For Russian Soccer Duo

Russian footballers Aleksandr Kokorin (left) and Pavel Mamayev (file photo)
Russian footballers Aleksandr Kokorin (left) and Pavel Mamayev (file photo)

A Russian court has prolonged the pretrial detention periods of two soccer players accused of beating a government official at a Moscow coffee shop.

The Tver District Court in the capital ruled on December 5 that Zenit St. Petersburg striker Aleksandr Kokorin and Krasnodar F.C. midfielder Pavel Mamayev will remain in jail until February 8, pending further investigation and possible trial.

Pretrial detentions for Kokorin’s younger brother Krill and the soccer players' friend Aleksandr Protasovitsky were also prolonged until the same date. The pretrial detention period is subject to further extension.

The four have been charged with battery and premeditated hooliganism in connection with an October 8 assault that attracted widespread attention in Russia.

They are accused of beating Denis Pak, an ethnic Korean official from the Russian Ministry for Industry and Trade, after he rebuked them for behaving improperly in a central Moscow coffee shop.

A video taken by a surveillance camera and broadcast by national television stations showed the official being hit over the head with a chair and slapped in the face.

The four men are also accused of beating Vitaly Solovchuk, the driver of television journalist Olga Ushakova, in a separate altercation near a Moscow hotel on the same day.

That attack was also caught on surveillance camera footage that has been broadcast on television in Russia.

The attacks have topped Russian television newscasts, prompting officials and lawmakers to call for the players to be punished.

The incident was also a blow to the reputation of Russian soccer after the country's successful hosting of the 2018 World Cup in June and July.

With reporting by RFE/RL's Russian Service, Medizona, Interfax, and TASS
  • 16x9 Image


    RFE/RL journalists report the news in 27 languages in 23 countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established. We provide what many people cannot get locally: uncensored news, responsible discussion, and open debate.

RFE/RL has been declared an "undesirable organization" by the Russian government.

If you are in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine and hold a Russian passport or are a stateless person residing permanently in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine, please note that you could face fines or imprisonment for sharing, liking, commenting on, or saving our content, or for contacting us.

To find out more, click here.