Another senior director of Russia’s gas sector died in violent circumstances. It is the sixth case with similar characteristics in less than six months in Russia and abroad. The body of Yuri Voronov was found in a swimming pool of a property near Saint Petersburg with a bullet to the back of the head.
Voronov, 61, was the head of Astra Shipping, a company that entered into contracts with Gazprom in the Arctic, which has been at a loss for the past two years. According to the news site Moskovsky Komsomolets, a Grand Power pistol was found next to the body. The wife testified that her husband, before leaving for St. Petersburg on July 1, had a verbal confrontation with his partners over the company’s losses.
Last January 29, in a country house near St. Petersburg, Leonid Shulman, 60, the chief director of Gazprom, who was a former director of Gazprom Transgaz, died of suicide according to the results of the investigation. On February 25, at the same site, 61-year-old Alexander Tyuliakov, deputy general director of the Gazprom Unified Settlement Center, head of company security, was found dead, who also worked for Gazprom Transgaz. Once again, the police ruled that the cause of death was suicide.
On April 18, the former deputy head of Gazprombank Vladislav Avayev and his daughter and wife were found dead in an apartment on Universitetsky Prospect in Moscow. According to the investigators’ initial account, Afaev shot his wife and 13-year-old daughter with a pistol and then committed suicide.
On April 21, Sergei Protosinha, the former top director of Novatek, his wife and daughter were found dead in Spain, in a house in the village of Lloret de Mar (Girona province). Protocinia had assets of €400 million and lived in France. The family was in Spain for the Easter holiday.
On February 28, Ukrainian-born oligarch Mikhail Watford was found dead in Wentworth, Surrey, Great Britain, where he had moved in the early 2000s. Watford, who was 67 years old, had amassed a fortune in oil and gas immediately after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The police concluded that his death occurred in mysterious circumstances. His real name was Mikhail Tolstoy. He changed it when he arrived in Britain.