Authorities say the warden of a prison in Russia’s Far East will be fired for providing a prominent gang leader with privileged treatment in the penitentiary.
The Federal Penitentiary Service said on February 25 that Colonel Aleksandr Radkov, the warden of the Corrective Colony No. 3, in the Amur region, will be fired from the post as soon as he returns from vacation.
In November, the Investigative Committee launched a probe against the colony's administration after photos of Vyacheslav Tsepovyaz, who is serving a 20-year prison sentence, circulated on the Internet.
Tsepovyaz, a member of the notorious Tsapok gang, which terrorized a rural farming community in southern Russia, could be seen in photos sitting in a room with a big television set, eating crab and caviar, and grilling meat.
After a public outcry, Tsepovyaz was transferred to another penitentiary and a probe was launched against members of the prison administration suspected of providing Tsepovyaz with the privileges.
The Tsapok gang operated in the community of Kushchyovskaya town in the Krasnodar Krai region from the late 1990s until 2010.
Members of the gang were found guilty of numerous kidnappings, robberies, a series of murders, including the brutal slaying of a wealthy farmer and 11 other people in 2010 that provoked a nationwide outcry, leading to the arrests of the gang leader and other high-ranking members, including Tsepovyaz.
The case also sparked controversy after investigations revealed the group's ties to local Russian officials.