A source within Russia’s law enforcement agencies told TASS that Meduza correspondent Ivan Golunov has been officially notified of the order to drop the charges against him and release him from house arrest. “Golunov has been familiarized with the order to close the case due to a lack of evidence of his participation in a crime,” the source said.
Meanwhile, Andrey Shchirov, who leads the Moscow police division for drug traffic control, told the independent TV channel Dozhd that he was unsure as to whether he would be placed on leave. “I need to figure out the reasons behind various decisions,” he said. “Everything will be clear soon. I’m not prepared to clarify anything right now.” The statement by Russia’s Internal Affairs Minister that first made the end of the Golunov case public indicated that “the officers who arrested” the journalist “will be temporarily released from their duties during the course of the investigation.” Shchirov is a direct superior of the officers who were physically present during Golunov’s arrest.