Military officer suspected of raping two draftees arrested in St. Petersburg

The police apprehended a senior officer of a military enlistment office on suspicion of having committed sexual harassment acts to conscripts in St. Petersburg. The 29-year-old Alexei Ivanov, an officer with a military enlistment office of the Krasnogvardeiski district of St. Petersburg, was detained following police investigation into two cases of sexual harassment. The investigation was launched after the parents of two conscripts, aged 17 and 18, reported the incidents to the police last week.

According to the police, the teenagers met the suspect at the enlistment office earlier this fall. The suspect made advances towards them and offered them to “get to know him better” inside the entrance of an apartment building No 42 in Udarnikov avenue. One of the teenagers was raped by the suspect during an encounter. The other teenager got luckier after somebody must have scared the rapist away in the middle of an abhorrent crime.

The police managed to track down the criminal within days. As it turned out, the suspect was identified as Alexei Ivanov, the 29-year-old officer with a military enlistment office of the Krasnogvardeiski district, reports.

The suspect is reported to have met the young men at the enlistment office. Investigators believe that Ivanov asked them to meet him near his residence on the pretext of helping draftees to get a deferment from military service. The suspect would lure the young men into an entrance of the apartment building and force them into having sex with him.

The prosecutor’s office instituted an action against the suspect on the grounds of facts listed in the reports filed by the victims’ parents. The suspect may be charged with committing deeds stipulated in Article 132 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (forcible actions of sexual origin). The suspect was taken into custody and put into a holding cell for 2 days in accordance with Article 91 of the Criminal Procedural Code of the Russian Federation.

The above incident is not the first reported case of sexual harassment toward conscripts. Vladimir Simarchuk, 54, former chairman of a committee for the protection of servicemen in Ufa, Bashkiria, was tried and found guilty of coercing a deserter into sex acts. The deserter is reported to have run away from his military unit located in the city of Ekaterinburg.

The police found out that the 18-year soldier had spent about six months in hiding after fleeing his unit in Ekaterinburg. Later the deserter arrived in Ufa and contacted his sister who talked him into seeking help at a local committee for the protection of servicemen.

Police investigators gathered irrefutable evidence to prove that the soldier had been raped by Simarchuk in his office. Simarchuk was taken into custody in November of 2004. The police found the victim’s underwear with traces of Simarchuk’s semen during a search conducted in his office. Besides, the police also found several photos featuring youngsters in the state of undress. A discrete room used for sexual encounters was discovered in Simarchuk’s office.

The police also found evidence indicating that the deserter was one of several young men forced by the suspect into having unlawful sex acts with him. Simarchuk was reportedly nicknamed “Soldier’s Mom’, according to witnesses. However, the prosecution was able to prove only one case of sexual assault committed by the defendant against the serviceman. Simarchuck was tried and convicted to three years in prison.

Translated by Guerman Grachev

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Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov