Wikileaks (4) – DEA and Russian authorities cooperate in OPERATION BALTIC STRIKE drug busts

Continuing my episodic trawl through Wikileaks for crime-related cables, this and this DEA-related ones caught my eye, relating to OPERATION BALTIC STRIKE, a joint initiative against traffickers smuggling cocaine from Latin America (especially Ecuador) to Russia. As with yesterday’s post, they offer an encouraging glimpse into how cooperation with the Russian police can work (even if it doesn’t always, this is still much better than a few years ago). Direct cop-to-cop cooperation is much more effective than we might fear – and often works informally at levels over and above what the protocols technically allow for, and this is a good thing.

Incidentally, I don’t know what happened to Vladimir Krasavchikov (although entertainingly enough, he shares a name with a colonel of the police and deputy head of the MVD’s Main Information Centre) – if, as and when I do find out, I’ll update this post. The M/V Pietari Cloud, incidentally, is a Maltese-registered dry cargo transport ship.

VZCZCXYZ0002
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #0331/01 0470912
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 160912Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEABND/DEA HQS WASHDC
RUEHGL/AMCONSUL GUAYAQUIL
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 0004
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA
RUEHWR/AMEMBASSY WARSAW 2416
RUEHAK/AMEMBASSY ANKARA 3704
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD 2764
RUEHCP/AMEMBASSY COPENHAGEN 1701
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 MOSCOW 000331 

DEA SENSITIVE
SIPDIS 

POST FOR DEA ONLY
AMCONSUL GUAYAQUIL FOR RAC BRIGGS, SA VARNI
AMEMBASSY QUITO FOR ARD GOLDBERG, SA WOLFF
AMEMBASSY BOGOTA FOR GS RODRIGUEZ, SA SULLIVAN
AMEMBASSY LIMA FOR SA HACKETT
AMEMBASSY WARSAW FOR CA BRADLEY, SA PALM
AMEMBASSY ANKARA FOR DEA RD DESTITO, FIM LOGUE
AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD FOR DEA ARD DUDLEY
AMEMBASSY COPENHAGEN FOR CA MORAN, SA KOHUT
DEA HQS FOR OGE/MENDOSA, SCHRETTNER, BARNES
DEA HQS FOR OGL/KOLEN
DEA HQS FOR NCI/BORDER
DEA HQS FOR NCIL/TRAVERS
DEA HQS FOR OSE/DISANTO, YASEVICH, SANCHEZ, ERDAHL
DEA HQS FOR SARI 

E.O. 12958:  N/A
TAGS: DEAX

SUBJECT:  JOINT DEA AND RUSSIAN INTER-AGENCY OPERATION BALTIC STRIKE
COORDINATION MEETING ON FEBRUARY 11, 2010 OF MOSCOW CO PRIORITY
TARGET CASE XI-07-0003, YECIJ, KRASAVCHIKOV, VLADIMIR 

CCX: GFXI-10-8002 OPERATION BALTIC STRIKE
 ZP-09-0004/YEC1K, MITREVICS, Vladimir 

REF: (A)  DEA Moscow CO TWX #131 DATED JANUARY 19, 2010.
 (B)  DEA-6 WRITTEN BY SA VARNI (GUYAQUIL RO) DATED    JANUARY 20,
2010.
 (C)  DEA-6 WRITTEN BY SA VARNI (GUYAQUIL RO), DATED    JANUARY 25,
2010. 

THIS CABLE CONTAINS AN ACTION REQUEST FOR THE QUITO COUNTRY OFFICE,
THE BOGOTA COUNTRY OFFICE, THE LIMA COUNTRY OFFICE, THE WARSAW
COUNTRY OFFICE, AND THE GUAYAQUIL RESIDENT OFFICE. 

1.(SBU) On February 11, 2010, the Moscow CO took part in a case
coordination meeting among multiple Russian law enforcement
entities. Participants included; Sergey Muraviev, Cocaine Unit
Chief, Federal Security Service, ("FSB"), Dmitry Abakumov, Cocaine
Unit Chief, Ministry of Interior ("MVD"), Nikolay Kukharenko,
Cocaine Unit Chief, Russian Federal Drug Control Agency ("FSKN"),
Andrey Metsger, Division Head, MVD Investigative Committee, Denis
Popov, Investigator, MVD Investigative Committee and Vitaly Fedotov,
International Cooperation Department, FSB. 

2.(SBU) Background of Operation Baltic Strike: 

Since 2005, the Moscow Country Office has been conducting Operation
Baltic Strike which targets the maritime movements of cocaine from
South America to Russia.  This is a very successful joint operation
that has resulted in the seizure of approximately 676 kilograms of
cocaine, 26 arrests, and approximately $200,000 USD.  In 2009, the
FSKN joined the operation.  As a result of Operation Baltic Strike,
the Moscow CO and Russian counterparts identified the Vladimir
KRASAVCHIKOV DTO as one of the most significant cocaine DTOs
operating in Russia. 

3.(SBU) As reported in Reference (A), on January 14, 2010, the
Moscow CO learned that Andrey SHINDER was expected to pick up a
shipment of cocaine while in Guayaquil, Ecuador.    SHINDER is a
steward onboard the shipping vessel M/V Pietari Cloud and has been
identified as a member of the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. 

4.(SBU)  As reported in Reference (B), on January 20, 2010, the M/V
PIETARI CLOUD arrived in the Puerto Maritimo, Guayaquil, Ecuador. 

5. (SBU) As reported in Reference (C), on January 22, Guayaquil RO
reported, SHINDER departed the ship and passed through port security
in Guyaquil, Ecuador, with a group of crewmembers.  At the time,
SHINDER was wearing a black polo type collard shirt, blue jeans,
with dark collar length hair.  Later in the day, SHINDER returned to
the port, and was observed passing through port security, carrying a
black, weighted bag on his shoulder. 

Agents Note: Surveillance video was obtained by the Guyaquil RO as
SHINDER passed through the ports entry/exit point.  A copy of this
video was passed to the Moscow CO and was subsequently shared with
Russian law enforcement. 

6.(SBU) On January 23, 2010, Guyaquil RO reported, Customs/Port K-9
unit conducted a routine search of the ship, with negative results.
The Port Unit did not know about the on-going investigation, as the
Guyaquil RO and vetted Unit Commander deemed it necessary to 

MOSCOW 00000331  002 OF 004 

maintain the integrity of this investigation.  The customs search
did not uncover SHINDER's bag as they searched crewmembers cabins,
nor was the bag located anywhere else on the vessel. 

7.(SBU) On January 23, 2010, the M/V Pietari Cloud departed Guyaquil
with its' final destination believed to be St. Petersburg, Russia. 

8.(SBU) On Monday, February 8, 2010, the Moscow CO was informed by
the Russian Security Service (FSB) that the M/V Pietari Cloud, prior
to arriving in St. Petersburg, Russia,  would travel to Gdansk,
Poland on February 19, 2010. 

Agent's Note: It is believed that Gdansk, Poland may be a refueling
point for the M/V Pietari Cloud. 

9.(SBU) ACTION REQUEST FOR THE WARSAW CO: 

The Moscow CO requests the assistance of the Warsaw CO and Polish
counterparts to assist in the surveillance of the PIETARI CLOUD
while docked in Gdansk, Poland and conduct surveillance in the
scenario if SHINDER attempts to off load the cocaine shipment in
Gdansk.  The Moscow CO believes surveillance of the M/V PIETARI
CLOUD, will aid in the subsequent Russian prosecution of members of
the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. 

10.(SBU) Russian Customs (FTS) and the interagency working group
including FSB, MVD and FSKN will prepare to conduct a thorough
inspection of the commercial shipping vessel, M/V PIETARI CLOUD,
upon its return to St. Petersburg, Russia. 

11.(SBU) In addition, the Joint DEA Russian Interagency Task Force
will prepare for the arrest of the following individuals identified
as members of the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO and linked to this
investigation: 

Valentin VOYNOVSKIY - NADDIS # 6640630 

Arthur ZAKARYAN - NADDIS # 6625894 

Gadzimurad NURMAGOMEDOV - NADDIS # 6634964 

Rishat STRELTSOV - NADDIS Negative 

Andrey SHINDER - NADDIS # 6364544 

12.(SBU) Following the arrest of the above mentioned individuals, a
warrant and subsequent Interpol Red Notice will be prepared by
Russian authorities, in anticipation of the arrest of Moscow CO
Priority Target Vladimir KRASAVCHIKOV - NADDIS # 6305832. 

Agents Note:  Russian Law Enforcement believes KRASAVCHIKOV
continues to reside in Ecuador.  Further, it is believed that
KRASAVCHIKOV may be residing with Lidia ESPINOZA-Quniteros in Quito,
Ecuador.  ESPINOZA-Quinteros is identified as a source of supply and
broker for the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. 

13.(SBU)  On January 26, 2010, the Moscow CO received immigration
records from the Guyaquil RO regarding country entry/exit records
for KRASAVCHIKOV and his aliases.  According to immigration records,
KRASAVCHIKOV was not in Ecuador at the time, but has had both air
and land entries into Ecuador utilizing Bulgarian Passport #
354800732 under the name, Krasimir Kirilov YOLOV and Russian
Passport # 51N1910241 under the name Vladimir KRASAVCHIKOV. 

14.(SBU) ACTION REQUEST FOR THE GUYAQUIL RO AND QUITO CO: 

MOSCOW 00000331  003 OF 004 

The Moscow CO is requesting the assistance of the Guyaquil RO and
the Ecuadorian National Police, along with the Quito CO in an effort
to locate and conduct surveillance of Vladimir KRASAVCHIKOV in
anticipation of Russian authorities submitting an Interpol Red
Notice for his arrest.  The Moscow CO has provided photographs of
KRASAVCHIKOV along with information regarding KRASAVCHIKOV's aliases
to the Guyaquil RO and Quito CO under separate communiqu. 

15.(SBU) ACTION REQUEST FOR THE BOGOTA CO AND THE LIMA CO: 

The Moscow CO is requesting the assistance of the Bogot CO and the
Lima CO to conduct border searches for KRASAVCHIKOV.  The
KRASAVCHIKOV DTO has criminal contacts in Peru and Colombia and it
may be possible that KRASAVCHIKOV may be residing in Peru or
Colombia.  KRASAVCHIKOV and his aliases are listed below: 

Vladimir Vasilievich KRASAVCHIKOV, Date of Birth: 05/17/1949,
Alternate Dates of Birth: 07/5/1951, 7/12/1956; Russian Passport #
51N1910241. 

Krasimir Kirilov YOLOV, Date of Birth: 07/12/1956; Bulgarian
Passport # 354800732. 

Vladimir Krasovskiy, Date of Birth: 05/17/1949, Alternate Dates of
Birth: 07/5/1951, 7/12/1956 

Vladimir Krasavchiko, Date of Birth: 05/17/1949, Alternate Dates of
Birth: 07/5/1951, 7/12/1956 

16.(SBU) The Moscow CO was advised that if the DTO suspects law
enforcement operations are imminent, members of the DTO may flee to
Poland.  The Moscow CO will coordinate with the Warsaw CO if such a
scenario arises.  Further, one member of the DTO, Valentin
VOYNOVSKIY was reported to have ties to corrupt officers within the
FSKN in St. Petersburg, Russia. 

17.(U) This cable was prepared by SA Patrick Apel and FSN
Investigator Slava Kurek in lieu of a DEA-6 per DEA Agent's Manual
Section 6242.11.  Please direct any questions or comments to SA
Patrick Apel or CA Michael Nowacoski at 7-495-728-5218 or by
Firebird e-mail.  Please note that Moscow is 8 hours ahead of
Eastern Standard Time. 

INDEXING 

1. KRASAVCHIKOV, Vladimir - NADDIS # 6305832
 File Title of Investigation. 

2. VOYNOVSKIY, Valentin - NADDIS #6640630
 DOB: 07/12/1956.  Ukrainian National
 a.k.a. Valentine VOJNOWSKI.
 Cell head of KRASAVCHIKOV DTO organizes distribution  of cocaine
obtained from Ecuador to Russia.  Believed  to have ties to corrupt
Russian Federal Drug Service  officers in St. Petersburg, Russia. 

3. Arthur ZAKARYAN - NADDIS # 6625894
 Part of the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. 

4. NURMAGOMEDOV, Gadzimurad - NADDIS # 6634964
 Part of the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. 

5. STRELTSOV, Rishat - NADDIS NEGATIVE
 DOB: 09/23/1963 

MOSCOW 00000331  004 OF 004 

 Identified as part of the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. 

6. SHINDER, Andrey - NADDIS # 6364544
 Currently a steward about the M/V PIETARI CLOUD.   Expected to
arrive in St. Petersburg, Russia in late  February 2010 with
shipment of cocaine. 

BEYRLE
VZCZCXYZ0007
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #0352 0491234
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 181234Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEABND/DEA HQS WASHDC
RUEHGL/AMCONSUL GUAYAQUIL
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 0008
RUEHAK/AMEMBASSY ANKARA 3710
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD 2770
UNCLAS MOSCOW 000352 

DEA SENSITIVE
SIPDIS 

POST FOR DEA ONLY
AMCONSUL GUAYAQUIL FOR DEA RAC BRIGGS, SA VARNI
AMEMBASSY QUITO FOR DEA CA GOLDBERG, SA WOLFF, IRS JOHNAKIN
AMEMBASSY ANKARA FOR DEA RD DESTITO
AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD FOR DEA ARD DUDLEY
DEA HQS FOR OGE/MENDOSA, SCHRETTNER, BARNES
DEA HQS FOR OGL/KOLEN
DEA HQS FOR OSE/YASEVICH, SANCHEZ
DEA HQS FOR NCI/KOLEN
DEA HGS FOR NCIL/TRAVERS
DEA HQS FOR NCTE/UPP
DEA HQS FOR NCTS/KROKE
DEA HQS FOR NCIE/LEHRER
DEA HQS FOR SARI 

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: DEAX

SUBJECT: Identification of Vladimir KRASAVCHIKOV's Current
Ecuadorian Telephone Number; XI-07-0003/YEC1J, KRASAVCHIKOV,
Vladimir (Priority Target) 

CCX: GFXI-10-8002/Operation Baltic Strike
 ZP-09-0004/YEC1K, MITREVICS, Vladimir 

REF A: DEA Moscow CO TWX #00331 dated February 16, 2010 

This cable contains an action request for the Quito CO and the
Guayaquil RO 

1.(SBU) In Ref A, on February 11, 2010, the Moscow CO took park in a
case coordination meeting with Russian law enforcement counterparts
on the Vladimir KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. During this meeting, it was
learned that Russian counterparts are expecting to arrest the
following members of the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO: Valentin VOYNOVSKIY,
Arthur ZAKARYAN, Gadzimurad NURMAFOMEDOV, Rishat STRELTSOV, and
Andrey SHINDER. 

2.(SBU) The arrests will occur after the M/V Pietari Cloud arrives
in the Russian seaport of St. Petersburg. It is believed that
SHINDER, a steward on board the M/V Pietari Cloud, is transporting a
cocaine shipment on behalf of the KRASAVCHIKOV DTO. The M/V Pietari
Cloud is expected to arrive in St. Petersburg during the week of
February 21, 2010. 

3.(SBU) Russian counterparts are also preparing to submit the
necessary documents in order to obtain an Interpol Red Notice for
KRASAVCHIKOV's arrest. KRASAVCHIKOV's current whereabouts are
unknown but it is believed that KRASAVCHIKOV is currently residing
in Ecuador and may even be residing with Lidia ESPINOZA-Quinteros. 

4.(SBU) The Moscow CO will assist Russian counterparts in
coordinating KRASAVCHIKOV's arrest. As soon as KRASAVCHIKOV's exact
whereabouts become known, the Moscow CO will contact the respective
DEA country office/resident office to determine what is needed by
the respective foreign counterparts to arrest KRASAVCHIKOV. 

5.(SBU) On February 18, 2010, the Russian Federal Customs Service
(FTS) advised the Moscow CO that KRASAVCHIKOV is currently utilizing
the following Ecuadorian cellular telephone number: 593-81132751. 

6.(SBU) ACTION REQUEST FOR THE QUITO CO AND THE GUAYAQUIL RO 

Please request Ecuadorian counterparts to obtain subscriber and toll
information on 593-81132751. Additionally please inquire if
Ecuadorian counterparts have the technical capabilities to track
KRASAVCHIKOV's cellular telephone via cell towers in order to locate
his whereabouts. 

7.(SBU) This cable was prepared by CA Michael Nowacoski and LES
Senior Investigator Vyacheslav Kurek in lieu of a DEA-6 per DEA
Agent's Manual Section 6242.11.  Please direct any questions or
comments to SA Patrick Apel or CA Michael Nowacoski 7-495-728-5218
or by Firebird e-mail.  Please note that the Moscow Country Office
is eight (8) hours ahead of US Eastern Standard Time. 

INDEXING 

1. KRASAVCHIKOV, Vladimir - NADDIS #6305832. Telephone Number:
xxxxxxxx. Remarks: Currently utilizing Ecuadorian cellular
telephone number xxxxxxxx. 

BERYLE

		
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