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Suspected killer of Pskov region cleric to be questioned shortly

August 06, 2013, 13:44 UTC+3

The priest was killed on August 5; his body with stab wounds was found in his house

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Photo ITAR-TASS/Lev Shoysberg

Photo ITAR-TASS/Lev Shoysberg

PSKOV, August 6 (Itar-Tass) - Investigators said the Muscovite suspected of killing priest Pavel Adelgeim, 75, in Pskov might be questioned on Tuesday.

"The investigators are ready to question the suspect today, if his condition permits," Anton Dobrokhotov, an aide to Investigative Committee Regional Department Director told Itar-Tass.

"The suspect underwent surgery on Monday; his life is not in danger now," Dobrokhotov said.

The priest was killed on August 5. His body with stab wounds was found in his house in Krasnogorsky Street, where the Church of Konstantin and Yelena is located. Police detained a 27-year-old Moscow resident suspected of the crime. He had stabbed himself and was hospitalized.

"The priest let the young man live in his house at request of a woman from Moscow," regional legislator Lev Shlosberg said. - "During a conversation in the kitchen, the guest grabbed a knife and stabbed Father Pavel in the stomach, whereupon he stabbed himself and was rushed to hospital."

Criminal proceedings were opened over murder.

Pskov region governor Andrei Turchak called the tragedy "a terrible crime." "It's a challenge to the society, mockery of the very principles of morals and faith," Turchak said.

"The tragic death of Pavel Adelgeim should remind us that we have to take care of each other," the governor added. He conveyed his condolences to the priest's family and his parishioners.

Pavel Adelgeim, who marked his 75th birthday on August 1, became a priest in Soviet times. He had been a Pskov episcopate cleric since 1976.

Lev Shlosberg wrote in his blog that the civil funeral would take place in the Church of the Holy Myrrh-Bearing Women on August 8. Pavel Adelgeim will be buried at a local cemetery.

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