Person investigated in MH17 case from Almetyevsk says about people “from Holland” reaching out to him

Former military Maksim Gerasimov on fake chat, forthcoming claim and mysterious people from the Netherlands

On Wednesday, the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) named four suspects in MH17 Boeing crash in Donbass in July 2014. Moreover, the JIT provided new evidence of the complicity of Russia in what had happened, including a private chat of former military of the Russian 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade (that allegedly owned the Buk that downed the Boeing) Maksim Gerasimov from Almetyevsk. Realnoe Vremya reached out to the person investigated in the case and talked with him about what had happened.

Leaked chat

The names of suspects in the MH-17 Boeing crash were made public last week. The Joint Investigation Team came to a conclusion that Russians Igor Strelkov (Minister of Defence of DPR), Sergey Dubinsky (who headed military intelligence in DPR), Oleg Pulatov (was Dubinsky’s vice) and Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko (commander of the cavalry battalion of the State Intelligence Service of DPR) might be implicated in the tragedy. It is said that the four people will be on the international wanted list, they will also face charges for murder.

At the press conference in the Netherlands also on Wednesday, there was given new evidence of Russia’s implication in the MH17 crash. It includes a chat of former military of the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade from Almetyevsk Maksim Gerasimov with Anastasia Dorokhova (journalists found out that her account was fake and probably belongs to international investigators). In the talk with the girl, Gerasimov revealed the number of his battalion and also said about movements of subdivisions of the 53rd brigade. This information, in the JIT’s opinion, confirms Russia’s complicity in the tragedy.

It should be reminded that 298 people died as a result of the Boeing’s crash in the summer of 2014. Investigation confirms that the commercial plane flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was downed by a Buk missile, which had allegedly been brought from Russia or, more precisely, from Kursk Oblast where the 53rd brigade of Armed Forces of Russia is based) to Donbass. The Russian side denied its implication in the tragedy.

Fake dialogue and people from the Netherlands

Now the person who is investigated by the JIT lives in Almetyevsk. According to a copy of his page, which was saved, the man is married and has two children. Maksim Gerasimov indicated Gazprom Transgaz Kazan as a place of job. However, in a talk with our newspaper, the former military denied this information specifying that he is “on holiday” on.

By the way, we had to look for a saved copy of his page because Gerasimov closed his account immediately after information about the investigation became public. Our interlocutor explained: “I closed my account not because I am hiding something but because this way I won’t be bothered by messages”.

“All the dialogue is fake in general. This all has been invented. I talked with her [Anastasia Dorokhova], but the topic was completely different: she worried that her boyfriend could be cheating her in the army. I didn’t expect that my chat could be published,” Maksim Gerasimov told Realnoe Vremya.

According to the ex-military, an unfamiliar young man “from the Netherlands” reached out to him about a month ago and said that “there are people in the Netherlands who had screenshots of his private chat with Dorokhova”.

“The man advised to talk to these people, but I said I was not interested. Nothing similar could happen. I couldn’t say anything because this wasn’t true. I don’t know where this man came from in general — he came to the old address of the rented flat. He said he was on holiday in Holland and some people contacted him and asked to meet with me,” Gerasimov shares. “It was hard to convince him to send me the screenshots. He sent me three screenshots at first, but I could see nothing there. Then I managed to obtain another part of the chat where I could somehow read what was written. But it was even basically not about our city.”

Gerasimov remembers how he began talking with Anastasia Dorokhova: “She just sent me a friend request and began to write.” The former military deleted the dialogue with the girl a long time ago.

“Now I am trying to recover that dialogue to deny this all. I will take up court proceedings only after the chat is recovered. Otherwise, I don’t see any sense in launching this process because it will be just words, it is what they have,” Gerasimov puts a full stop in this story.

By Lina Sarimova