MOSCOW, March 6 (RIA Novosti) – Three suspects detained by Moscow police over the acid attack on the Bolshoi Theater’s artistic director Sergei Filin, including the organizer, have signed statements admitting their part in the crime, police said on Wednesday.
Police investigators named the three as the theater’s solo dancer Pavel Dmitrichenko, the suspected mastermind; the actual attacker Yury Zarutsky and Andrei Lipatov, who drove him to the crime scene.
The three gave themselves up to investigators when detained on Tuesday, a city police spokesman told RIA Novosti on Wednesday.
A masked assailant splashed concentrated acid into the face of 42-year-old Filin, the Bolshoi’s artistic director, on January 17 in Moscow and fled the scene. Filin suffered third-degree burns to his face and eyes.
“The motive for the crime lies in [Filin’s] hostile relations with Dmitrichenko connected to his work,” a police spokesman said on Wednesday, but did not elaborate.
On Tuesday, the police searched an apartment belonging to Dmitrichenko, the leading solo dancer of the Bolshoi Theater, which has become known for its intrigues and rivalries.
Dmitrichenko has performed at the theater for more than a decade, and played the tsar in “Ivan the Terrible” in one of the most recent performances.
Zarutsky, the suspected attacker, was detained in the Tver Region northwest of Moscow and has been brought to the capital, the police spokesman added.
Filin, who has undergone several operations in an attempt to rescue his eyesight, said last month he knew the identity of his attacker but did not give any names.
He speculated the aim of the attack was to remove him as artistic director and destroy the prestigious Moscow ballet company’s reputation. Filin is currently undergoing treatment in Germany, and is expected to fully recover use of his eyes, doctors say.