Police deny top lawmen carried casket of crime boss after viral funeral VIDEO

Police deny top lawmen carried casket of crime boss after viral funeral VIDEO
A video of a huge procession in Russia’s Far East went viral over a claim that it showed the funeral of a local crime lord, and his casket being carried by the city’s police chief and top prosecutor.

On Tuesday, there was a big funeral in Amursk, a city of some 40,000 located in Russia’s Khabarovsk region. The deceased person was said to be a career criminal in life with numerous convictions, local police confirmed without naming the man.

According to a video of the event published on the social media, the man was better known under his criminal nickname Zaruba and he was the head of organized crime in Amursk. His influence in the city was so great that the head of the city police force and the senior prosecutor were allegedly present at the funeral and carried the casket while road police stopped traffic.

At least that’s a local resident who published a video of the procession claimed, apparently after shooting the footage from a nearby building. The clip shows dozens of people carrying what appears to be a casket followed by a long line of cars, but offers no proof of police involvement in the event.

The video quickly went viral and sparked understandable outrage among internet users, who were not happy to learn that modern Russia is not far removed from Al Capone’s Chicago. Except their anger may be misplaced.

Regional police launched an investigation and are now saying the claims are not true. The prosecutor was not even in the city on the day of the funeral, said the Interior Ministry’s branch in Khabarovsk, the region’s capital which oversees the police department in Amursk. The police chief was not at the funeral and the traffic police didn’t stop traffic but fined procession members who disrupted it, the statement said.

“The person, who posted the video and the comments, has been identified. He is known to the police. He was summoned for an interview and failed to explain why he did it,” a spokesperson for the police branch in Khabarovsk told RIA Novosti on Thursday.

Police demanded the original publication of the video be deleted, but given its viral fame copies are still widely available. Law enforcement is considering filing a libel lawsuit against the author, the spokesperson said.

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