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Six Dead: Russian Convict Pardoned by Vladimir Putin After Serving in Ukraine Goes on Brutal Killing Spree

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A pardoned Russian convict allegedly killed six people this month.

Sep. 25 2023, Published 4:00 p.m. ET

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A Russian convict pardoned by Vladimir Putin after serving in Ukraine for six months allegedly went on a brutal killing spree in northwest Russia this month, RadarOnline.com has learned.

Igor Sofonov, 37, reportedly had three years left to serve at a prison colony in St. Petersburg when he was recruited by Russia's Ministry of Defense to fight in Ukraine earlier this year.

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Igor Sofonov was recruited by Russia's Ministry of Defense to fight in Ukraine earlier this year.

Shortly after returning from the war in August, Sofonov reportedly joined forces with Maxim Bochkarev – another convict he had previously met in prison – and the two allegedly went on a horrific killing spree.

According to Daily Star, the gruesome incident took place in the village of Derevyannoe in Karelia – a region in northwest Russia – earlier this month.

Sofonov and Bochkarev reportedly broke into the house of Artyom Tereschenko and proceeded to stab both Tereschenko and his 71-year-old father to death.

Russian authorities said that Tereschenko's two children – aged nine and 12 – managed to escape through a window and call for help before the assailants set the house on fire.

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The gruesome incident took place in the village of Derevyannoe in Karelia earlier this month.

Meanwhile, Sofonov and Bochkarev reportedly moved to another residence about 100 meters away from the first attack.

The pair proceeded to kill four more people – three men and a woman – before setting the home on fire.

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Russian authorities reported that the motive behind the disturbing rampage remains unclear, although some speculate that drugs and alcohol played a role in the brutal killing spree.

The family of one victim suggested that Sofonov's experience on the frontlines of Ukraine may have contributed to his violent actions.

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The family of one victim suggested that Sofonov's experience on the frontlines of Ukraine may have contributed to his violent actions.

"My dad definitely did not deserve such a death,” the sister of one of the deceased said. “We are from a good family. This is not how he should have died.”

“I believe that anyone who was in prison, even if he went to war, then he should be sent back when he was done for such serious crimes,” she continued. “They should not live among us because cases like this do happen."

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Both Sofonov and Bochkarev reportedly had previous convictions for murder, rape, robbery, and drugs. Both suspects were allegedly intoxicated when they were detained.

As RadarOnline.com previously reported, Putin tasked his late mercenary chief – Yevgeny Prigozhin – with recruiting Russian convicts to fight in Ukraine shortly after the Russian leader launched his invasion in February 2022.

Before his suspected assassination last month, Prigozhin indicated that roughly 32,000 Wagner mercenary ex-convicts were returning home to Russia from the frontlines of the Ukraine war.

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Roughly 32,000 ex-convicts have reportedly returned to Russia from the frontlines of the Ukraine war.

Ukrainian Lieutenant General Simon Mayall recently confirmed that Putin was still “clearing out” Russian jails in an effort to make up for the devastating number of Russian troops lost in Ukraine.

“The Russians are running out,” Mayall explained earlier this year. “From what we can understand they’re clearing out the jails, they’re paying lots of people in the east of the country, very very poor people, it’s always been a way of recruiting for the armed forces.”

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