Neo-Nazi Maxim Martsinkevich, the leader of the radically right-wing group “Occupy Pedophilia,” which targets gay men for the purpose of harassing them, announced on November 10 that he had fled Russia to avoid possibly facing charges over a video he recently released.
Martsinkevich, who is also known as Tesak (meaning “Machete” in Russian), wrote on the social networking site VKontakte that he had fled to Thailand on an “urgent vacation” to avoid charges of extremism, punishable by up to two years in prison.
According to the Moscow Times, Martsinkevich claimed that Russian authorities may be seeking to bring him up on charges regarding a video made in Ukraine, which shows him humiliating and beating an Iraqi gay man.
As usual for his “Occupy Pedophilia” operations, Martsinkevich lured his victim by pretending to be interested in a sexual encounter and setting up a meeting, after which the man was kidnapped and beaten by Martsinkevich’s teenage adherents; the footage was then posted online.
He has not yet been officially charged with any crimes, but the Moscow Times reports that Martsinkevich’s apartment, as well as his parents’, were searched a week previous to his fleeing the country as part of an investigation related to the video.
He also posted a photo of a legal complaint from a prominent anti-fascist activist, Alla Gerber, on his VKontakte page, but its authenticity could not be verified.
There is also an investigation in progress in the city of Lugansk, Ukraine, where the video was filmed; despite its close ties with Russia, there are no laws against homosexuality in the country, and the Iraqi-Ukrainian community in the area filed a complaint regarding the kidnapping, assault, and battery suffered by one of their own.
Russia does have laws against racially-motivated hate crimes, under which Martsinkevich has twice been convicted in the past.