In Russia, a top official of the Ministry of Defense associated with the Wagner Group was arrested

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Top Defense Ministry official linked to Wagner Group arrested in Russia

We are talking about the high-ranking head of the 223rd Letny Detachment airline, which is engaged in charter transportation of Yevgeny Prigozhin's mercenaries.

Russian Evgeny Butusov. This is reported by the propaganda publication RIA Novosti, referring to the decision of the Preobrazhensky District Court of Moscow.

Yevgeny Butusov, who is associated with the Wagner Group in the media, is accused of taking a bribe in the amount of 2 million rubles.According to propagandists, the Moscow court granted the prosecutors' petition and sent the general director of ground handling of the 223rd Letny Detachment airline into custody until February 5, 2023 inclusive.

Yevgeny Butusov was detained on February 5 by law enforcement officers, and his guilt, according to Russian media, “is confirmed by the results of operational-search activities, the protocol of the inspection of the scene, the testimony of a witness, the protocol of the confrontation.” Testimony against a top official of the RF Ministry of Defense was given by a witness with whom he is personally acquainted.

The publication “Radio Liberty” claims that the “223rd Flight Detachment” of the Ministry of Defense is associated with the “Wagner Group”. The airline's planes have repeatedly delivered Evgeny Prigozhin's mercenaries from Russia to Syria, Libya, the Central African Republic and Sudan.

The Current Time TV channel found that M Invest, which belongs to the head of the Wagner Group, regularly orders from 223rd Flight Detachment” services for the implementation of charter flights. Only in the period from August to December 2018, the airline made seven money transfers to the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation for a total amount of more than 50 million rubles. Tu-154 that crashed near Sochi in December 2016. Then on board were Russian servicemen and representatives of the Alexandrov Choir, who flew to Syria to congratulate the aggressor country's air force group on the New Year. It was the airline “223rd Flight Detachment” that carried out the flight of the Tu-154 aircraft.