The Presnensky District Court of Moscow arrested until November 10 Anton Kotov, a disinfector of the Regional Center for Disinfection LLC. He is charged with providing services that do not meet safety requirements, resulting in the death of people. According to investigators, it was Anton Kotov’s treatment of the premises of the Magnit store with insect repellent that led to the poisoning of two people with watermelon.
The death of 61-year-old Valentina Petrunina and her 15-year-old granddaughter Polina caused a huge resonance. This was due to mysterious and at first not explained in any way events that preceded their death. An elderly woman, her granddaughter and 38-year-old mother of the latter, Elena, were hospitalized by ambulance teams at intervals of several hours from their apartment in house No. 16 on Sovkhoznaya Street. Doctors diagnosed them with toxic damage to internal organs with an unidentified substance. Despite all the measures taken, only Elena was saved, who reported that the day before, on September 7, her family had bought a watermelon from the Magnit store, which they had been eating for two days.
Experienced investigators and operatives and the best experts were thrown into the investigation. As a result, it was found that the watermelon contained traces of cygatrin, used in pest control. Soon a defendant appeared in the case – 39-year-old Anton Kotov, an employee of the Regional Disinfection Center, which carried out insect treatment at the store where the watermelon was purchased. It was the violation of the rules of disinsection, according to the investigation, that caused the incident. Although the general director of the Regional Center for Disinfection Dmitry Kutyev previously stated that Anton Kotov acted according to the instructions, it is impossible to get so badly poisoned with tsigatrin in the dosage used in Magnit. Be that as it may, the metropolitan department of the Investigative Committee of Russia (TFR) charged Anton Kotov with providing services that did not meet safety requirements, resulting in the death of a person by negligence (part 3 of article 238 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation), and filed a petition with the court his arrest.
In court, it turned out that in April, between JSC “Tander” and the Regional Disinfection Center, an agreement was signed to carry out work at the facilities of the joint-stock company, including the store “Magnit” on Sovkhoznaya Street. Anton Kotov worked there.
According to the investigation, in violation of the established requirements, the disinfector did not take care that during the processing of the premises the products were removed or carefully covered.
As a result, the cygatrine got onto the vegetables. Experts found that the grandmother and granddaughter died from poisoning with a substance that is part of the tsigatrin.
In court, the investigator argued that he had reason to believe that, being at large, Anton Kotov could hide, destroy evidence in the case, put pressure on witnesses and other participants in the proceedings, threaten them with the purpose of giving the last false testimony or in some other way obstruct the investigation. In addition, the representative of the TFR said, it is possible that the defendant in other cases provided disinsection services without observing security measures. Finally, the investigator noted that the marital status and state of health did not prevent Anton Kotov from staying in the pre-trial detention center.
The defense objected to the arrest. The lawyer pointed out that at the present time, neither the cause of death of the victims, nor the substance that could cause their alleged poisoning has been established. In addition, the concentration of toxins in cygatrine cannot be fatal. Anton Kotov himself did not admit his guilt and also asked not to arrest him. But the court took the side of the investigation and sent the accused to a pre-trial detention center. This decision will be appealed by the defense.