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Russian Investigations

Older than the Pyramids – and Decaying

“Besovy sledki” (Devil’s Trail) is a part of the unique complex of petroglyphs or stone carvings, images on the rocks made by ancient people. It is situated near the town of Belomorsk in Karelia. Despite its high tourist potential, the site, in fact, belongs to nobody, and therefore is left without proper custody. In 1960s, […]

Desperately Looking for Baltic Cesium

The ecologists are concerned: Areas contaminated with cesium-137 have been found at the bottom of the Gulf of Finland. A report from the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection-2008 started the concerns. The experts take the contamination for the “legacy” of Chernobyl incident, but it is hard to determine more precisely: data from […]

How to Steal 40 Billion Rubles

In 1995, the Murmansk region was shocked by unprecedented fraud: five swindlers managed to pull a con game on local government and transfer 40 billion rubles ($6,5 million at that moment) assigned for medical purposes to foreign bank accounts. Later four of them were captured and convicted, yet the fifth still walks free. This story […]

The Curtain Falls, the Drama Goes On

Retired actors in St. Petersburg are fighting fiercely for the House of Stage Veterans on Petrovsky Island, and the battle has gone on for years. Retired actors and the general public are sure that funds allocated for institution repairs are misused. The House of Stage Veterans is a whole complex of historical buildings where actors […]

War Heroes Met a Sad Future

Russia celebrates her war heroes from the Great Patriotic War (Second World War) every year – but a group of them were hidden away, their rights abused, and their future bleak. A number of the disabled veterans, who turned to begging for their survival, were driven from the streets and placed in nursing homes for […]

The barking money

Government and inhabitants of St. Petersburg are ready to invest significant sums in keeping and caring stray dogs and cats. Unfortunately, these noble longings can be used by swindlers and corrupted officials as well. The story of a dog named Bonus, who was severely crippled, is only a particular example showing how complicated the financial […]

A Nenets in Prison

Leonid Latyshev killed a man, while he was drunk, and ended up in prison in Arkhangelsk. Latyshev is a Nenets – a nomadic people in northwest Russia, traditionally living of reindeer herding. In today’s Russia, the Nenets live in villages and face increasing problems with alcohol and crime. Reporter Svetlana Sinitsyna’s investigation of the Nenets […]

Six Feet Under – but a Grave is not for Everybody

Unidentified corpses of drunkards, homeless people and aborted children are being buried on Vyborg’s cemetery in the paupers’ graves in violation of government rules. A decent burial is not available for everybody in the town, located in the Leningrad region.  The cemetery urges for expansion, but local authorities don’t have money for it. From 2005, […]

The Never-Ending Story of Letters and Parcels

The Russian post service has been scrutinized in journalism experiments and examinations since Soviet times – proving the delivery of letters and parcels to be too slow and of low quality. Up to 2013 Russian government plans to finance the modernization of the “Russian Post” service by significant amount of money – more than €2 […]

When Volkhov roars

Every year in the spring time, the river of Volkhov in Russia’s Novgorod region overflows. This causes significant property losses for the state and inhabitants of surrounding towns and villages. The nature could and should be tamed, but it requires constant renewal of the hydraulic structure on the territory of region and its neighbors. Existing […]