The Prosecutor General’s Office of Tajikistan announced the arrest of five suspects in the kidnapping and murder of the first deputy head of the Orienbank, Shukhrat Ismatulloev, who is close to President Emomali Rahmon. This is stated in the message on the website of the department.
According to the Prosecutor General’s Office of Tajikistan, Ismatulloev was kidnapped by a criminal group created by Dilshod Saidmurodov. According to investigators, Saidmurodov developed a plan to kidnap a banker back in March 2022 and, for this purpose, created an armed organized criminal group of more than 10 people.
For certain reasons, the kidnapping of Ismatulloev did not take place last year. A year later, on June 23, Saidmurodov, together with Rustam Ashurov, Shokhrukh Khudzhaev, Akbar Akhmedov and other members of the organized criminal group, forcibly put Ismatulloev in a Hyundai Sonata car with tinted windows and took him away in the direction of the village of Shodob-1, located in the village council of Chorbog, Varzob district.
“These persons in one of the houses of the indicated village, until 3:00 on June 24, tortured Ismatulloev with the use of physical force, an electric shocker, an auto-hair dryer and other means and subsequently killed him. Then, in order to hide the traces of the crime, the body of the murdered man and the car were thrown into the Zarafshan River at the 130th kilometer of the Dushanbe-Chanak highway, ”the Prosecutor General’s Office of Tajikistan said in a statement.
On the same day, according to the department, Saidmurodov and Akhmedov fled to Russia, while Khudzhaev and Ashurov fled to Turkey. Five days later, Ashurov ended up at the Chisinau airport, where he opened fire, killing two officers and injuring a passenger. During the arrest, Ashurov received numerous bullet wounds, from which he later died .
“Currently, five members of an organized criminal group have been detained. Together with law enforcement agencies of foreign countries, appropriate measures are being taken to detain and bring other criminals to justice. The search for the body of Shukhrat Ismatulloev continues,” the prosecutor’s office noted.
Shukhrat Ismatulloev, 49, is the brother of Dilshod Ismatullozoda, the former CEO of Tajik Air. He is one of the closest people of Hasan Asadullozoda, chairman of the Orienbank and brother-in-law of the country’s President Emomali Rahmon. Ismatulloev served as the first deputy chairman of the Orienbank for many years and, according to informed sources, actually led it.