A navy officer in Russia has been investigated for a maritime crime where he conspired to steal propellers of his own ship, reports Russian media.
Baltic Fleet Military Investigation Department Chief Sergei Sharshavykh has revealed that “an officer, as part of an organized group, together with other military personnel and civilians, stole two bronze propellers with a total weight of 26 tons from the ship”.
The suspect was identified as the commanding officer of warship Bespokoynyy whose bronze propellers were the target. This ship commissioned in 1991 was a Sovremenny-class Soviet destroyer.
Suspects Replaced Items
Bespokoynyy was to be converted into a ship museum as it was in drydock at the Yantar Baltic Shipyard since 2016. The screws and propeller shafts were already removed during docking to keep it afloat for permanent mooring. The hull has been sealed for the same purpose.
Sergei termed this as an unusual case were
the suspects replaced the items to cover their tracks “Instead of bronze screws, the swindlers found similar metal screws, the cost and quality of which are several times lower. As a result, the damage to the state amounted to 39 million rubles”, he said
The commanding officer along with the other conspirators stole the bronze screws and replaced them with similar looking cheap ones which resulted in a damage of $530,000.
The ship has been lying in berth at the Baltic Fleet’s Kronstadt naval base outside St. Petersburg since 2018.