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Russian General Popov Reacts With A Smile To Repeated Refusal To Release Him From Custody

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Russian General Popov Reacts With A Smile To Repeated Refusal To Release Him From Custody
IVAN POPOV
PHOTO: PRESS SERVICE OF THE MINISTRY OF DEFENSE OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION

The former commander of the Russian 58th Army also raised a clenched fist as a symbol of maintaining morale.

Former commander of the 58th Army, General Ivan Popov, arrested in connection with fraud involving more than 130 million rubles when purchasing metal structures, was not upset by the second refusal of the court to release him from custody.

In the video, the general, which was filmed after the announcement of the court decision and as participants in the closed trial left the courtroom, smiles and raises a clenched fist as a symbol of maintaining morale.

The 235th Garrison Military Court for the second time refused to release Popov from the pre-trial detention center. Last Friday, the general’s defense made such a request. He reacted to the first refusal with irony, noting that “it could have been worse.”

On Monday, a petition from the investigation was considered, which proposed to transfer the detainee under house arrest “taking into account the data characterizing the person involved in the criminal case, as well as other circumstances established during the investigation.”

According to investigators, Popov was involved in the theft of more than 1.7 thousand tons of rolled metal products with a total value of 130 million rubles in 2023. Construction materials were purchased by the military-civil administration of the Zaporizhzhia region in order to provide humanitarian aid.

Popov was appointed commander of the 58th combined arms army, which was responsible for the Zaporizhzhia direction, after the start of the Russian war in Ukraine. In July 2023, Russian State Duma deputy Andrei Gurulev published an audio message from the general to military personnel, in which he spoke about the “difficult situation with senior management.” Popov reported to the leadership about the lack of counter-battery weapons and artillery reconnaissance stations, as well as about the “mass death and injury” of soldiers, after which he was removed from his post “in one day.”

The Russian Ministry of Defense did not officially comment on this information, and the Kremlin did not assess the current situation in any way.

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