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Prosecutor highlights analysis of phone calls as key to solving Nemtsov’s murder

June 01, 18:48 UTC+3 MOSCOW

According to investigators, Ruslan Mukhudinov, a former officer of the Chechen Sever (or North) battalion, is the mastermind behind the murder

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Portrait of Boris Nemtsov

Portrait of Boris Nemtsov

© Sergei Fadeichev/TASS

MOSCOW, June 1. /TASS/. Thorough analysis of the details of the defendants’ phone calls in the murder case of Boris Nemtsov, a politician gunned down in the heart of Moscow in February 2015, played a crucial role in proving their guilt, prosecutor Maria Semenenko told a Moscow district military court on Thursday.

"A re-enactment of the crime was carried out at the murder scene with the use of special equipment that showed what base stations were used at the site. Specialists got a huge pile of data from major mobile operators and figured out who exactly was on the bridge at the moment of the murder," Semanenko told TASS at the court, where a hearing is set to be held on Thursday.

As specialists were analyzing the data and narrowing down the circle, two strange telephone numbers caught their attention that were connected for a short while and after the crime became inactive. Step by step, using the process of elimination, the investigators uncovered the entire chain of the crime thanks to that expertise," she added.

The prosecutor said the same expertise was used in probing the murder of Novaya Gazeta daily’s investigative reporter Anna Politkovskaya, who was killed along a stairway in an apartment building in 2006.

During Thursday’s court session, the prosecutor delved into the details of the experiment.

Boris Nemtsov, a former deputy prime minister under then President Boris Yeltsin and co-chairman of the Parnas party and a lawmaker from the Yaroslavl regional legislature, was gunned down in the center of Moscow on February 27, 2015. Five persons were arrested on suspicion of murdering the politician.

According to investigators, Ruslan Mukhudinov, a former officer of the Chechen Sever (or North) battalion, is the mastermind behind the murder. Mukhudinov was charged in absentia. He has been on an international wanted list since November 2015. A criminal case against him and other unidentified persons is being investigated separately.

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