Unsolved Murders Revisited

The Investigative Committee plans to revisit numerous unsolved murders from the 1990s, its head, Alexander Bastrykin, said in an interview published Wednesday.

"We have begun returning them to life, and this is a basic principle for us," Bastrykin told government daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta. "No crime should remain unpunished, no matter when and how it was committed."

There are more than 90,000 unsolved murders in Russia, and many have not been properly investigated, said Bastrykin, whose committee was created last year as a semiautonomous body under the auspices of the Prosecutor General's Office.

"When you travel to the regions to conduct detailed examinations of such cases at the scene, you often become convinced that nobody made much of an effort to look for the criminals, and that's why they were never found," he said.

The Investigative Committee began work in September, taking over many investigative functions that had belonged to the Prosecutor General's Office.

Last month, Dmitry Dovgy, a senior committee official who had been leading the high-profile corruption case against Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Storchak, was accused of taking bribes and became the target of a corruption probe.

Bastrykin declined to comment on the Dovgy probe but said the committee was "engaged in an uncompromising struggle for integrity in our ranks."