One of the subjects of our team’s investigations, Rostislav Zorikov, attacked a Viasna activist in Prague. It happened on the evening of Friday, July 7, near a building owned by Zorikov.
Rostislav Zorikov is the son-in-law of Boris Obnosov, head of the Russian defense holding company Tactical Missiles Corporation. In Prague, Zorikov owns an old four-story house and a 140 m2 penthouse near the center. He lives there with his wife Olga, the daughter of Boris Obnosov. Back in May, the ACF published an investigation revealing that the family of Russia's chief rocket scientist owned property in the Czech Republic. However, Obnosov and his relatives have still not been put on the EU sanctions list.
Viasna activist Andrei Karelin came to the building owned by Zorikov in a peaceful protest — he projected our investigation on the wall of the house. In the evening Zorikov himself arrived at the building in his BMW and attacked the activist, trying to snatch his phone by force. Having failed to do so, Zorikov left. Karelin went to the hospital, where the doctors registered his abrasions and bruises.
When the ACF learned about the incident, our team contacted Andrei immediately in order to support him. We helped him find a local lawyer and now Andrei is going to file a complaint with the police. Our team really hopes that Czech law enforcement will at least respond to this outrageous incident, because our attempts to get the Czech authorities to respond to the investigation itself have unfortunately not yielded any results so far.
This is the definition of impunity. I have spent hours talking to the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Czech police regarding this case. We have brought bulletproof evidence of this person's involvement in Russian state missiles making business. We have found their assets in the Czech Republic.
What did I hear? Nothing. No official response and nothing more than “we’ll see what we can do” in person.
Well, now you see. Zorikov not only continues to live in Prague but he lives like a mafiosi. Driving around luxury cars he has no official income for, and beating up people who dare to protest against corruption and injustice.
Maria Pevchikh, Chairwoman of the Board of ACF International
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