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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Baltika Brewery Executive Shot Dead in Apartment




ST. PETERSBURG -- The chief financial officer of Baltika brewery, which makes Russia's best-known beer, was shot dead through the window of his St. Petersburg apartment, officials said Monday.


Ilya Weisman of Baltic Beverages Holding, or BBH, was shot at several times with a 5.45 mm automatic weapon while standing in his fourth-floor apartment Sunday evening, prosecutor's office spokeswoman Tatyana Vasilyeva said. St. Petersburg's frequent shootings have made the city infamous as Russia's crime capital.


"The killer was hiding on the dark staircase ... and shot [across a courtyard] through the kitchen window where Weisman and some of his relations were. One of the bullets hit him in the chest," Vasilyeva said.


Television footage showed the gloomy building which has an internal courtyard surrounded on four sides by the windows of apartments and staircases.


"None of his relatives were injured and they called the emergency services," Vasilyeva said. She said the killer or killers ran away before police arrived.


BBH, a joint venture between Norway's industrial conglomerate Orkla and Finland's beverages group Hartwall, said Monday that no extra security measures were planned for executives in Russia after Weisman was killed.


"This is a surprise, because we have seen a move away from this sort of thing in Russia," BBH managing director Christian Ramm-Schmidt said in Helsinki.


"We felt pretty safe there as things had stabilized and the economic climate had improved in the last year. There were no major problems," he added.


Ramm-Schmidt declined to comment further on the killing, saying the company had no further information and that the investigation was in the hands of the local authorities.


BBH operates six breweries in Russia, four in the Baltic states and two in Ukraine.