One of Russia’s most notorious criminal authorities Ded Hasan (Aslan Usoyan) was shot dead by a sniper rifle near Old Phaeton restaurant in the center of Moscow on Wednesday. This place is known as headquarters of Usoyan. The killer fired several shots at the famous kingpin. One bullet hit a bystander in the leg.
From the gunshot wounds got in the attack, Usoyan died in the ambulance on the way to hospital. According to preliminary information, the sniper used armor-piercing bullets.
This is not the first attempt on the famous crime boss. The previous one happened in September 16, 2010 and also in the center of Moscow, in the yard of a house on Tverskaya. Ded Hasan’s bodyguard was wounded as well then. Usoyan survived. He was operated on in Botkin Hospital. During the operation, approaches to the hospital were surrounded by very expensive foreign cars of thieves-in-law of all colors. The killer leaving the crime scene was shot with a surveillance camera.
The current attempt came after a lull. However, as it became known, in the beginning of this year, the criminal world began to prepare for war. The clan of Ded Hasan was to meet in fight with the clan of united opposition led by Rovshan Dzhaniev and Dzhemo Mikeladze.
During December both sides were actively conducting rallies and also pouring a lot of accusations at each other. In particular, Rovshan was named organizer of the murder of the thief-in-law Vyacheslav Ivankov and last attempt at Usoyan.
At the same time, in one of the hotels in Dubai (now Dzhaniev is living there), about 60 active thieves-in-law, supporters of Usoyan’s main opponent Tariel Oniani (Taro), who is serving a sentence in a Russian prison, held rallies and “crowned” 16 new members. And although Grandpa Hassan’s clan “worked” on the newly “kingpins” and soon some of them began to express public remorse for participation in the Dubai meeting, and newly 26-27 people joined the clan, it didn’t give a result, as it turned out.
Aslan Usoyan is, of course, a legend of the Russian underworld. No wonder that large mass-media became interested with him in the mid-nineties. In particular, they wrote about his detention in 1995 in Sochi where he supervised a meeting of 350 participants. Meeting was dispersed. However, there was nothing unlawful in the meeting — authorities were going to celebrate the anniversary of death of thief-in-law Rantik Safaryan and to discuss the issues. Having kind of a feeling of the end of the meeting nobody took weapon and drugs.
In 1996 Usoyan was detained in Petersburg on suspicion in the murder organisation. It happened after in the beginning of 1996 a series of the gangland killings with numerous murders swept across the North Caucasus. In particular the Ministry of Internal Affairs received the operative information that one of the largest Russian criminal authorities Aslan Usoyan was involved to the murder made in Pyatigorsk.
Together with Hasan the driver — four times loser George Avdushev was detained. Subsequently it was found out that Avdushev was the assistant to the vice-president of legislative assembly of St.-Petersburg deputy Victor Novoselov. He was released. Besides, police detained three more persons — two Assyrians and the Georgian which Grandpa Hasan for some reason named as the relatives. During a search at Hasan’s place the TT pistol loaded with eight cartridges was found and at one of the "relatives" — pump-action shotgun. All four were sent to predetention center.
Police operation was not ended up. Investigators departed to Moscow where they conducted a search in Hasan’s hired apartment. There it was withdrawn about 2 kg of jewels, $380 thousand by cash and documents of the various commercial structures controlled by Hasan or created by him. Under the assumption of police in Usoyan’s house the pooled cash fund of the group was stored.
Source: Newspaper "Kommersant" № 91 (1049), 6/1/1996
Extremely interesting relation between Usoyan and the largest in the country fuel company "Lukoil" was noted by journalists in 1998. In criminal environment Bogomolov Gennady Semenovich is a "thief-in-law", criminal nickname "Bolomol". Supervises activity of fuel company "Lukoil" under "commission" of the Tyumen criminal structures; he got acquainted with their management during his stay in “Lukoil’s” capital Kogalym where he was living after he served a sentence in Corrective Labor Establishment in Labytnangy.
Source: «Compromat.ru», 1998
But in court his case was broken up and soon Hasan was released.
In January, 1998 Aslan Usoyan again got to sphere of journalistic interest in connection with large police detention in Shakhty city (Rostov region). Employees of local Management on Organized Crime dispersed a meeting of 96 criminal "authorities" which gathered from the whole Russia and from the CIS countries. One of the most influential "thieves- in-law" 61-year-old Aslan Usoyan was organizer of the meeting. Thieves from Republic Komi, Stavropol territory, Moscow and Moscow Region, St.-Petersburg, Armenia, Kemerovo region, Tatarstan, Krasnodar area, Alania, Tver, Nizhniy Novgorod, Volgograd, Chernigov, Kirov and Sverdlovsk areas sent their representatives to this meeting. The greatest number, about 20 persons, was presented by Moscow delegation. A receiving party was presented by four Rostov "thieves-in-law": Brick, Edic Red, Grachenok and White. 69-year-old Stavropol "authority" known under a nickname Kosoy was the most elderly among gathered. In total from 20 regions of the country there arrived 96 persons, 50 from which were crowned "thieve-in-law".
According to employees of MOC in agenda of the meeting there was an issue of relations between Hasan and some other "thieves-in-law". They were dissatisfied with activity of Hasan paying a lot of attention to business recently and wished to deprive him of his thief' dignity. Then Hasan arranged meeting which should support him and at the same time punish dissatisfied ones.
Almost everyone including Hasan was released Bidding farewell to police old "thief-in-law" said that "after such greeting he would never set foot on the Don’s ground".
Source: Newspaper "Kommersant" № 2 (1405), 1/14/1998
One interesting circumstance of that thieves' meeting also attracts attention: there was "thief-in-law" Matvey Iliadi (Pilidi) who was living in Greece for a long time and was a coordinator of activity of Russian-speaking groups in Eastern and Central Europe.
Source: Newspaper "Kommersant" № 27 (1430), 2/18/1998
A bit later journalists informed about serious positions that Usoyan obtained in 1994 in Nizhniy Novgorod. It happened after thief-in-law Pavel Zaharov (Cirul) was seized. Thief Zachary Kalashov (Shakro-junior) was Usoyan’s partner in the control over informal business of this region.
However fast enough these positions reeled because of pressure of local police.
Source: Newspaper "Kommersant" № 134 (1537), 7/25/1998
Next time mass-media became interested in Usoyan again in connection with the thieves’ meeting dispersed by police. This time events happened in Odessa, in the territory of Ukraine. More than 120 persons participated in the meeting. "Thieves-in-law" and "authorities" came here from all CIS countries to decide how to live in a period of crisis, and also to reconcile two famous leaders of the criminal world Rudolf Aganov and Hasan Usoyan (Grandpa Hasan). Probably, therefore the delegation from Russia was one of the most representative on a meeting.
The majority of "thieves-in-law” and among them there were such known leaders of the criminal environment as Usoyan, Pipia and Vagin as usually was released — they did not have even drugs. However, they were forced to get out of the city. They were said to be followed by local police to the airport and railway station.
The gangster meeting organized by the oldest Russian "thief-in-law" Usoyan supposed to conciliate him with not less authoritative Rudolf Aganov. Last accused Grandpa Hasan of waste of thieves' pooled cash fund and last year achieved his decrowning. The conflict between authorities took a giant scope. Actually, as the investigators say, all criminal Russia broke up to supporters and enemies of Grandpa Hasan.
Trying to get back a rank and posts at the same time Hasan (he supervised South of Russia) arranged three meetings — in Rostov region, Ekaterinburg and Tashkent. But all of them were dispersed by police. It was not possible to make it even now as well. First, from 300 invited thieves only 40 arrived, and secondly, police again interfered.
Also in agenda of the meeting there was also an issue of financial crisis. Gangsters put money of the pooled cash fund in state credit obligations and kept it in deposits of the banks many of which became bankrupts.
Source: Newspaper "Kommersant" № 167 (1570), 9/10/1998
Next time journalists remembered Aslan Usoyan in connection with murder in Moscow of Petersburg criminal authority Konstantin Yakovlev (Kostya Tomb) who was in close confidential relations with Usoyan. 48-year-old Konstantin Yakovlev and the 27-year-old idle inhabitant of Leningrad region Denis Tsarev (according to some information, the assistant to the deputy of the State Duma Mikhail Zadornov) died on May, 25th, 2003 in Moscow after their car was shot. The car driver 52-year-old Muscovite S.Chikov also died of his wounds, one more passenger - the 30-year-old inhabitant of Petersburg was hospitalized in a grave condition with wound of the left shoulder and a forearm.
Journalists noticed that dead Yakovlev was closely connected to Moscow thief nicknamed "Grandpa Hasan". In the mid-nineties Moscow thieves repeatedly offered Tomb a position of supervisor in Petersburg and, on hearings, even crowning. But he diplomatically refused, managing thus not to offend the gang but, in every possible way underlining that he "did not wish to be involved to criminal environment".
It was possible to consider Tomb’s position really unique. He was named as Petersburg "supervisor" of Moscow thieves, the person of governor Yakovlev and Berezovsky's authorized representative helping to the disgraced oligarch to create business in Petersburg.
Officially Konstantin Karolyevich was a president of TV Development fund but, on hearings, the sphere of his influence included almost all electronic mass-media working on decimeter television channels.
Source: www.fontanka.ru, 5/26/2003
Usoyan was told to notice young Kostya when that transported antiques from Caucasus to Peter as courier, from well-known authority and the future leader of the Georgian opposition Dzhaba Ioseliani to beginning businessman Ilya Traber.
Source: «Moscow truth», 9/10/2009
Interesting things were written about Usoyan by journalists in 2009. According to the press, during Leonid Kuchma's stay at Presidential post in Ukraine at the airport Borispol he was met personally by Grigory Surkis (president of Federation of football of Ukraine, member of executive committee of UEFA, owner of Kiev "Dynamo", real Ukrainian oligarch).
Source: «Moscow truth», 9/10/2009
In the beginning of 2000th years the thieves' theme became so popular that journalists published the letter in which thieves sentenced thief-in-law Tariel Oniani to death. Under the letter there were signatures of influential thieves including: Yaponchik, Grandpa Hasan, Lasha Rustavsky, Jury Pichuga, Vasya Voskres, Oleg Mukha, Kostya Scar, Leha Zabava, Serega Surgutsky, Shakro-junior, Koba Rustavsky.
According to official version, thieves' message was caught by police on September, 19th. Police kind of made own investigation of circumstances of attempt at Vyacheslav Ivankov, more known as Yaponchik, and came to a conclusion that Oniani ordered a hit.
The rumor says that at one of thieves' meetings Yaponchik (Vyacheslav Ivankov) achieved thief Simony to be "decrowned". Yaponchik then was supported by thieves Aslan Usoyan (Grandpa Hasan), Sergey Boitsov (Fighter) and some more criminal authorities. Oniani took it as a personal challenge. Taro is told to be wounded so much that he publicly offended Usoyan and Ivankov. Such insult in the criminal environment can never be forgiven. And it is not a surprise that in 1991 after Ivankov was released ahead of schedule (with support of numerous requests of singer Josef Kobzon, legal expert Sergey Kovalev and ophthalmologist Svyatoslav Fedorov) Tariel Oniani decided to leave the country and to stay in Paris.
Source: Journal "Ogonek" № 21 (5099), 10/5/2009
In the end of 2009 Usoyan again became interesting for journalists who described in details Usoyan’s life earlier partly already known; in this connection they mentioned about one of his relatives It was police lieutenant colonel Boris Pashaev who in the late nineties worked for thieves-in-law issue and was considered as outstanding police investigator. Since 2001 he is considered as dangerous special criminal and is in federal search. He is convicted of robberies, rapes and falsification of evidences. The day before he was supposed to be detained Pashaev hided in Georgia having taken the whole archive. Now the former policeman consults Georgian authorities on thieves' issues.
Source: "Russian Newsweek", 11/16/2009
Next time journalists remembered Aslan Usoyan because Tver regional court of Moscow repeatedly authorized arrest of Alexander Schukin — former deputy Minister of Industry of the USSR, deputy of General Director of ZAO "Voskhod" in Serpukhov, one of the largest in the country manufacturers of a cardboard and paper. Schukin was convicted of extortion in 2008 of the real estate evaluated in $12 million at businessman Evgeny Vasilyev. According to the investigation, last transferred to convict one the company possessing a large warehouse complex after a meeting with him at the restaurant. At that meeting Mr. Schukin was supported by criminal authorities Aslan Usoyan (Grandpa Hasan) and dead Vyacheslav Ivankov (Yaponchik). Protection of Mr. Schukin told that he only tried to indemnify a loss put by relatives and friends of Mr. Vasilyev.
On December, 23rd, 2008, as it comes from case papers, at restaurant "Blue Elephant" on Novinsky boulevard he together with unknown persons required $12 million from Evgeny Vasilyev. When the sustained refused to pay Mr. Schukin and unknown persons threatening him with murder made a new demand — to transfer ZAO "Country Plaza" which owned a warehouse complex in Moscow with total area of more than 10 thousand sq. meters to Alexander Schukin. Mister Vasilyev "got threats really" and signed contract of purchase of ZAO according to which the real estate was sold for $50 thousand. Victim wrote cash voucher, however he was not given any money. Under the application of the victim a criminal investigation of Mr. Schukin was opened.
As victim Vasilyev told at a meeting in the restaurant Alexander Schukin informed that his father-in-law — former chairman of Federation of a judo and sambo-wrestling of Moscow Region Mikhail Sinyakin and also the ex-deputy chief of department "N" of FSB of Russia (supervises customs) Sergey Naumov owe him money. "As the father-in-law at that time was wanted and mister Naumov — in prison I should pay for them", — Mr. Vasilyev remembered that conversation. After that, as he approves, the threats began. As he said, "authorities" which were present at the meeting did not interfere to the conversation, however already their presence convinced Mr. Vasilyev of gravity of the threats.
Journalists mentioned that this event could become a display of the internal conflict in ZAO "Voskhod".
Source: Newspaper "Kommersant" № 222 (4277), 11/27/2009
In the summer of 1994 in Antwerp, someone named Mikaeli Rafael, an Israeli citizen was arrested. He had a parcel with him that he was going to send to Paris. Oniani was listed the recipient. In that parcel the gendarmes found a fake Belgian passports, including the one for the name of Tariel Oniani, born in Tkibuli in 1952. Then Oniani came into notice. The French police learned a lot about his involvement in the smuggling of cigarettes and vodka, racketeering, grand larceny, trade of counterfeit documents, illegal shipments of petroleum products from Iraq, and others. They began monitoring his telephone conversations, from which the assumption of his involvement in the assassination of former Georgian Defense Minister Giorgi Karkarashvili appeared. In 1995 the French arrested Oniani on charges of attempting to smuggle drugs, but decided to release him on bail.
In 1998 in Vienna, the owner of the Georgian Airlines «Orby" David Sanikidze was killed - unknown shot him in the head. Among the arrested suspects there was Oniani' brother - George. And in the house of Sanikidze they found the French court ruling of 1995 to prosecute citizens of Georgia with Oniani listed there. Therefore, it is possible that Oniani was the organizer of the murder of Sanikidze, as one might have been putting together a dossier about him.
Soon Oniani moved to Spain.
Source: Ogonyok from 05.10.2009
A scandal associated with the name of Tariel burst in 2005, when the Spanish prosecutor's office put him to the international wanted list on suspicion of organizing a criminal group, money laundering and smuggling illegal immigrants into Europe from Georgia. According to the investigation, Oniani laundered criminal proceeds by investing them in real estate, besides, he was suspected of belonging to the "Russian mafia". To arrest him, the police conducted a massive operation "Wasp", actually one of the largest in Europe. There were more than 400 policemen involved, armored vehicles and helicopters, 50 locations were searched, where the offices of Oniani's companies were located, as well as the projects constructed by him. During the searches immigrants from Georgia without work permits in Spain were detained. Also there were 28 people arrested who had been involved in the creation of an illegal organized group and money laundering - all of those were founders and managers of construction companies building houses in the Mediterranean. But Oniani yet got disappeared.
Source: "Kommersant” № 112 (3196) on 22.06.2005
A few months later in the United Arab Emirates, the Kurd Zahar Kalash was arrested, who was considered the head of the gang which included Oniani as well. Kalashov was accused of money laundering; one of the companies involved in his schemes was called LUKoil. And when they searched the house of Oniani in Barcelona (as part of Operation "Wasp") credit cards had been found, through which he and the Kalash transferred funds from Lukoil; as well as documents proving that Oniani owned shares in Lukoil. The company denied this information, but the rumors leaked about the connection with the "Russian mafia" prevented Lukoil from buying a large stake of Spanish oil company Repsol.
Source: "Russian Forbes" from April 2009
During the operation, the friend and assistant of Oniani - Besik Liparteliani - was also arrested;he had recruited 800 people from Svaneti to work in Spain. 12-year-old daughter of Oniani Gvantsa was placed in a private home for juveniles, which is essentially a prison for teenagers, expecting Oniani to come for her. The girl was released after the personal intercession of President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili.
Source: "Kommersant" № 112 (3196) on 22.06.2005
In 2008 an alternative version of murder of the former FSB officer Alexander Litvinenko appeared in the Ukrainian mass media; it was linked to Oniani, so-called "Georgian traces".
The Spanish police, who did not want dirty money investments in the country, asked Litvinenko for consultations in order to gain understanding of the situation in the Russian criminal community. After the operation "Wasp", which affected Oniani, there were rumors among the criminals about the alleged aid to Litvinenko. Litvinenko and Oniani first met in 2003, then Litvinenko began working in the commission of the Italian government at the invitation of his Italian friend Mario Skamarella.
After disappearing from Spain, Oniani appeared in Moscow, where he received Russian citizenship and residence. Perhaps he managed to convince the Russian special services that he could be useful to lobby the Georgian President Saakashvili.
Source: "Our Version" of 22.12.2008
It is known that in 2007 Oniani decided to organize a meeting between the disgraced tycoon Badri Patarkatsishvili, the de facto leader of the opposition, and one of the leaders of Georgian MIA Irakli Koduae - in the midst of confrontation between the opposition and the Georgian President Saakashvili. After it a recording appeared on Georgian television, on which there was Patarkatsishvili offering the general to overthrow Saakashvili. As a result, Patarkatsishvili was accused of involvement in anti-state conspiracy. Since then, Saakashvili accused Russia that it was giving citizenship to the enemies of Georgia.
Source: "Russian Newsweek" from 16.11.2009
At the end of 2005 being in London, Litvinenko started transferring information that to the Russian intelligence services were interested in. He planned to return to Moscow with the archive of the information collected. Ukrainian journalists assumed that Oniani could have been feared of Mr. Litvinenko' arrival to Moscow. His departure would not please the British secret service also; in that respect their interests with Oniani coincided. But it turned out to be just an assumption.
Source: "Our Version" of 22.12.2008
In June 2009 Oniani was arrested in Moscow; he lived there under the name Tariel Muluhov. He was detained in the Moscow suburb village of Gorky-2. He was charged for the abduction of Georgian businessman Johnny Mangaladze. Oniani appointed him a meeting near the Moscow restaurant "Golden Ring" to borrow money, which he asked to send by hand of Abutidze. When Mangaladze came, Abutidze invited him into his car. At that moment Oniani also came to them, and Mangaladze was moved into a minibus and taken to some apartment, where he was held to demand a ransom from his relatives. They managed to collect about half the amount named, and Mangaladze was released, but later they resumed their threats, and he appealed to the police. It was a criminal case under part 2 of article126 of the Criminal Code (abduction). As a preventive measure the court decided to take Oniani into custody.
Source: "Kommersant" № 104 / P (4159) on 15.06.2009
The very fact of Oniani’s detention in custody was considered a favorable chance for reducing the conflict tension in between the clans of thieves.
As for the episode with Managadze, then, according to investigators, Oniani offered him protection. He refused because his business was legal. After that meeting the businessman was beaten, and his wife was demanded money. The main mistake Oniani made, according to the operatives, was his personal involvement in the crime.
Source: "Kommersant" № 43 / P (4343) on 15.03.2010
In late 2009, the crime boss Vyacheslav Ivankov (Jap) died from assassination attempt. On July, 28 at the exit of the restaurant "Thai elephant" on the Khoroshevskoye highway he got a perforating wound of the abdominal cavity from a sniper rifle. He died a month later in the hospital. According to one of the versions, the attempt on Ivankov was associated with the conflict between the two criminal clans led by Oniani and Aslan Usoyanom (nicknamed Ded Hasan). Ivankov supported Usoyan.
Source: "Kommersant" № 189 (4244) on 10.10.2009
Oniani and Ded Hasan had long been rivals for power in the thieves' world - Oniani did not want to obey the authority of the latter. For several years they had been fighting for the remains of the empire of Zakhary Kalashov, nicknamed Shakro Young; in 2006 he was arrested in Spain. Both the authorities, or rather their fellows wanted to gain his channels for money laundering: Lasha Rustavi from Hasan’s side and Merab Sukhumi from Oniani’s. Thus a mutual dislike appeared which spilled into a war «by the code of criminals”. First, they started exchanging threatening diplomatic notes. Merab Oniani and his supporters deprived Lasha of his thievish authority, and Lasha did the same thing. Jap took the side of Ded Hasan.
In summer 2008 Oniani held a convention on the boat in Pirogovskoe reservoir; Ded Hasan and Jap did not show up, but the Interior Ministry commandos did. More than 30 thieves had been detained; the majority was released, but some did get custody. Then Ded Hasan arranged "a run" in zones meaning the imprisoned supporters of Oniani were to have troubles. Oniani initiated retaliatory "runs", but most of the cons ignored them.
Source: "Russian Newsweek" from 16.11.2009
Allies to Oniani assumed that his arrest in Moscow occurred thanks to Ded Hasan, as the crime Oniani had got caught for, was too insignificant for him.
Source: Prime Crime on 15.06.2009
When Oniani was taken into custody in "Matrosskaya Tishina", Hasan circulated a note among the prisoners, which was signed by many of the criminal authorities; resolving into the message that Oniani was to be killed. The note was intercepted by law enforcement authorities, and voiced it live, after which all the inhabitants of the country's prisons learned its contents. Oniani is now contained in a special unit to protect him.
Source: Ogonyok from 05.10.2009
In March 2010 Russia expressed its readiness to extradite Oniani to the Spanish authorities which had been searching for him since 2005. The Federal Migration Service has learned that Oniani has never been a citizen of Russia. Most likely, first Oniani will stand the Russian court, and after that he will be transferred to Spain.
Source: Kommersant from 11.03.2010
It is possible that in response to that Spain will extradite its citizen, former head of Yukos-controlled company “Fargoyl" Antonio Valdes-Garcia (he appeared in the case of Yukos).
Source: Kommersant from 15.06.2009
At the end of March 2010 in France thief in law, supporter of Oniani, Vladimir Janashia was killed. According to investigators, Hasan’s people murdered him to revenge for the death of Jap. The French police assumed it basing on monitoring of telephone conversations of kingpin Kakha Shushanashvili (Kakha Rustavsky). Thus, it became known that the clan of Hasan (it was supportered by Rustavi) blamed Oniani and his closest associates Vladimir Janashia and Merab Jangveladze (Merab Sukhumi) for the murder of Jap.
Source: Kommersant from 25.03.2010