Neo-Nazi fugitive spotted among Ukrainian saboteurs
Alexey Levkin, a notorious Russian far-right militant, has been spotted among a Ukrainian saboteur group that launched a raid on Russia’s Belgorod Region earlier this week.
The attack was carried out by the so-called Russian Volunteer Corps (RDK), a collaborationist unit fighting for Kiev that is said to be composed solely of Russian nationals. The group appears to have multiple far-right fighters within its ranks, including Levkin, who took part in the raid and shared footage of the attack on social media.
Born in 1984, Levkin is best known as the founder and frontman of the M8L8TH, a national-socialist black metal band formed in Russia in the early 2000s. The cryptic name of the band is commonly interpreted as “Hitler Hammer,” with the 88 code commonly used by neo-Nazis to refer to the German dictator. The band, which itself describes its music genre as ‘militant black metal’ remains active and is currently based in Ukraine.
Apart from playing neo-Nazi black metal, Levkin also openly engaged in far-right extremism and was arrested by Russian law enforcement in the mid-2000s. The activist was accused of being a part of a far-right gang that desecrated ethnic minorities’ cemeteries, attacked ‘foreigners’, and even committed several murders. Levkin himself, however, avoided jail time as he was deemed to be mentally unstable, and was institutionalized instead.
He was released from an institution in 2011 and created a new neo-Nazi group, ‘WotanJugend’. Levkin actively supported the 2014 Maidan coup in Ukraine, launching fundraisers online to get weaponry, medicine, and other equipment for the pro-Maidan side.
Levkin fled Russia in 2015, moving to Kiev and continuing his far-right activities there unhindered, even joining the notorious neo-Nazi Azov Battalion. In 2018, he was arrested in absentia by a Moscow court, standing accused of creating an “extremist group” and “inciting hatred” based on nationality. The far-right activist himself claimed the “extremist group” was the WotanJugend, which he insisted was nothing more than a public group on the VK social media platform, created by like-minded individuals who were not even acquainted in person.