Correspondent in Moscow
Alexander Lazarev, 29, suspected of having killed three medical students, was arrested on Sunday in the Russian town of Orsk, in the region of Oremburgo border with Kazakhstan, after an intense police macro-operation that has lasted four days. Two of the young women were found last Thursday almost burned in the apartment they rented in the town of Gai (Orenburg) and the third in the courtyard of the building, also lifeless.
It was also found the kitchen knife with which the assassin stabbed all three girls. The fire, according to the Police, was caused by himself with the intention of erasing the traces of the brutal crime. It turns out that Lázarev was released from jail three months ago, after serving the sentence imposed on him for killing a nightclub manager.
He returned to Gai to meet with his wife and daughter and, according to his statements to the agents who detained him, which are reproduced by various Russian media, the three students, aged 17, 18 and 19, invited him to spend the afternoon with them. . Lázarev has confessed to being the author of the deaths, although he maintains that he does not remember why or the details of how he did it.
The murderer had to be this Monday hospitalized in a health center in Orsk, apparently due to the effects of narcotics that were administered in the past days. This circumstance has prevented the first interrogation. Investigators believe Lazarev pretended to be in a coma. Within a few hours, he regained consciousness.
The security cameras picked up the murderer’s escape route and, despite the fire, the agents were able to find his clothes in the student’s apartment. His analysis by the scientific police was able to determine the DNA, with which he has been identified thanks to the database of the Russian Interior Ministry. The killer’s genetic material was also found in the dress of one of the victims.
The discovery was made quickly, since Lázarev spent 9 years and 4 months in prison for killing the person in charge of an establishment called the Orange club. He did so during a fight on February 23, 2012, during which he stabbed him in the neck. Before that tragic episode, he was already reported for theft. The offender was then 20 years old and worked as a car mechanic.
The Orenburg authorities offered last week one million rubles, almost 12,000 euros, who could provide information that would allow them to find and arrest Lázarev. But no help was needed. The theft of a fleeing vehicle, a Russian-made VAZ-2110, put the police on their trail. Already surrounded and with the wheels of the car perforated by bullets, he tried to take refuge on Sunday in a day care center, but ended up getting caught.
He met his wife by correspondence
Lázarev met his current wife by correspondence while serving a sentence. They married in 2017 and later had a daughter. All this while he was in jail. The couple’s life together began this summer, when he was released. According to some acquaintances, he got a job as an assistant to a businessman. What no one has been able to explain so far is his link to the three massacred students.
Much longer it took to capture another serial killer, a Radik Taguírov. The police searched for him for eight years and found him in December last year in the city of Kazan. He is accused of having killed 26 women between the ages of 75 and 90 during 2011 and 2012.
Two years earlier, in December 2018, it was established that a policeman from the Siberian town of Angarsk named Mijaíl Popkov, who was already serving a life sentence for killing and raping 22 women, had actually killed 60 others. He surpassed even the biggest serial killer to date, Andrei Chikatilo. Popkov offered his victims to drive them home in his police vehicle to sexually abuse them and then murder them.