Russian colonel responsible for draft extorts washing machine as bribe, sent under house arrest

A military court in Moscow has sent Colonel Ivan Mertvishchev, an employee of a mobilisation department at the General Staff responsible for draft, under house arrest for extorting a bribe in the form of a washing machine from a draft officer in Moscow’s district of Rameniki, Kommersant reports.

Mertvishchev, Kommersant says, decided to check a draft office in Ramenki in November when the conscription window was opened, informing the draft officer beforehand. “The colonel made it clear that he believed that the recruitment of conscripts was going very badly in that office, and if everything turned out to be fine with the documentation, then he would find fault anyway.”

The colonel then offered to resolve the issue by providing him with a washing machine worth no less than 70,000 rubles [€1.100], the media outlet says. The draft officer complained about bribe solicitation to the military intelligence department at the FSB.

The washing machine was purchased, and the inspecting colonel was told that the order was complete and ready to pick up. When Mertvishchev arrived, he was immediately detained by the FSB. He was charged with receiving an extorted bribe and pleaded guilty.

It was revealed earlier that Mikhail Guryanov, a contracted soldier found guilty of deserting his unit and escaping the Ukraine War, was sentenced to one year of suspended sentence.

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