Former police officer Denis Konovalov, who has been jailed to await trial in connection with the fabricated drug case against Meduza special correspondent Ivan Golunov, has reportedly testified about the logistics of framing Golunov. The anonymous news outlet Baza published what it claims is a summary of and excerpts from Konovalov’s testimony.
According to the purported testimony by Konovalov that appears in Baza’s report, the policeman received an order to plant illegal narcotic substances in Golunov’s belongings from his supervisor, Moscow drug control boss Igor Lyakhovets. Konovalov and his team followed Golunov in their car on June 6, 2019, the day of the journalist’s arrest. They then approached the journalist on foot, announced that he was under arrest, and led him back to their car in handcuffs. Konovalov allegedly told investigators that he held Golunov with one hand and opened his backpack to insert illegal drugs with the other.
Baza’s transcript indicates that Konovalov obtained the necessary drugs from the evidence base for a different criminal case. The policeman also allegedly said that he personally planted cocaine in Golunov’s apartment. “An electronic scale with traces of N-methylephedrine was also seized from the apartment, but it is not clear when exactly Konovalov found time to hide them,” Baza noted.
Konovalov has pleaded guilty in the case against Golunov’s arresting officers and testified against his supervisor, Lyakhovets. Four other arresting officers were also jailed to await trial on January 30 following an extended effort on the part of Golunov’s legal team to have criminal charges brought against the policemen.