On January 27, law enforcement officers came to search building No. 175 on Lyublinskaya Street in Moscow, where arrested opposition politician Alexey Navalny lives, Ivan Zhdanov, the director of the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK, recognized by the Ministry of Justice as a foreign agent) said. The apartment of Navalny’s wife was searched as well. Investigative actions are associated with a criminal case on the violation of sanitary standards.
Law-enforcers started breaking the door to Yulia’s apartment open, without waiting for her lawyer, who was due to arrive within 15 minutes. They also taped the peephole and security cameras with duct tape.
Searches are also underway in the Navalny LIVE studio, said FBK lawyer Lyubov Sobol. Law enforcement officers also came to the FBK office, to the apartment of the press secretary of the Navalny headquarters and other public figures related to Navalny, his headquarters and organizations.
Security officers are looking for “calls to participate in uncoordinated actions.”
The Interior Ministry is searching Navalny’s supporters to find electronic media “containing calls for an unlimited number of people to take part in an uncoordinated action on January 23rd,” Mediazona said. The search warrant says that the Ministry of Internal Affairs has “sufficient grounds to believe” that such media and other items important for the investigation can be found in Navalny’s offices and places of residence of the above-mentioned individuals.
The searches began on the eve of the all-Russian action in support of Alexey Navalny. The protest action is scheduled for next Sunday, January 31st.
The first such action took place on 23 January. Security forces brutally suppressed the protests. A record number of demonstrators was detained – 3,893 people, of which more than 1,500 were detained in Moscow.
Aleksey Navalny himself remains in custody at Matrosskaya Tishina pre-trial detention center. On February 2, the court will consider changing his suspended sentence on the Yves Rocher case to the real jail time. Navalny was arrested after he returned home from Germany, where he was treated for alleged Novichok poisoning. Navalny conducted his own investigation and found out that FSB officers were involved in the attempt on his life. According to Navalny, the FSB officers acted on the orders that they received from President Vladimir Putin.
The day after Navalny’s arrest, his Anti-Corruption Foundation released an investigation documentary about “Putin’s palace” which is being built in the vicinity of the city of Gelendzhik on Russia’s Black Sea coast. The property is allegedly evaluated at 100 billion rubles. In just a few days, the video received almost 100 million views.
Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov was forced to make a number of statements to deny the information that Navalny exposed in the documentary. Putin had to explain himself too. On January 25, he bluntly stated that the palace did not belong to him.