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The aide to a Russian member of parliament was found murdered
The aide to a Russian member of parliament was found murdered in his Moscow apartment on Thursday evening, investigators said.

Alexei Belyayev, who worked as an aide to Deputy Duma Speaker Alexander Babakov, was reported missing on Thursday by colleagues. Police found him at 9:00 p.m. lying in his dressing gown, with several knife wounds. He is believed to have died the previous night.

The apartment had been ransacked, but it remains unclear what items were stolen, as Belyayev, who was from Cherepovets, lived alone and rented the apartment. The door and locks were not damaged.

"Investigators are now exploring several versions, including murder for the purpose of burglary," Vladimir Markin, a spokesman for the Investigation Committee at the Prosecutor General's Office, told reporters on Thursday evening.

Police are currently studying footage from the building's surveillance cameras.

An investigation source said Belyayev and his killer may have known each other, as the attacker appears to have been let into the apartment during the night.

"He may have known and trusted the unknown killer to let them into his apartment at night," the source said.

The source also said the murder could have been committed by a group of people.

The head of the Investigation Committee at the Russian Prosecutor General's Office, Alexander Bastrykin, has taken personal control over the investigation.

A colleague of Belyayev said the man's professional activities were unlikely to have been a motive for the killing, as he was in charge of technical protocol issues, and had no involvement in political affairs.

"He was a functionary, not involved in public affairs, indifferent to politics, and not interested in political life," he said. The colleague also described Belyayev, who had worked in the State Duma for six years, as a "harmless and friendly" man.


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