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Vladislav CHELAKH





Classification: Mass murderer
Characteristics: Former border guard
Number of victims: 15
Date of murders: May 27/28, 2012
Date of arrest: June 5, 2012
Date of birth: 1992
Victims profile: 14 soldiers and a huntsman
Method of murder: Shooting
Location: Arqanqergen, Kazakhstan
Status: Sentenced to life in prison on December 11, 2012

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Arqanqergen mass murder was a mass murder, carried out by Vladislav Chelah, a 19-year-old soldier. Arqanqergen (Kazakh: Арқанкерген) is a border post on the Qazaqstan-Chinese border.

At 5 a.m. on May 28, communication with this post was lost. When police came to the scene they found the burned quarters and 15 corpses (14 soldiers and a huntsman). All of the bodies were burnt, but subsequently identified.

A few days later, 19-year-old soldier Vladislav Chelah, who worked at this post, confessed to the murders of his colleagues. He later claimed that he was innocent, but he was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. President Nursultan Abishuly Nazarbayev declared a day of national mourning.

List of victims

Name Kazakh name Year of birth Rank
 Kereev Altynbek Kutjanuly  Кереев Алтынбек Құтжанұлы 1984 captain
 Aqyshov Yerlan Yergaliuly  Ақышов Ерлан Ерғалиұлы 1988 sergeant
 Aqylbayev Rustem Bagdatuly  Ақылбаев Рүстем Бағдатұлы 1991 soldier
 Sersembayev Talgat Amangeldiuly  Сәрсембаев Талғат   Амангелдіұлы 1984 soldier
 Aganas Qambar Asqaruly  Ағанас Қамбар Асқарұлы 1991 soldier
 Emirgaliyev Bekzat Abatuly  Әмірғалиев Бекзат Абатұлы 1989 soldier
 Balgabayev Daniyar Garifouly  Балғабаев Данияр Ғарифоллаұлы 1992 soldier
 Iliyasov Janat Qatuly  Ілиясов Жанат Қанатұлы 1992 soldier
 Imenov Meyirhan Sagyndyquly  Именов Мейірхан Сағындықұлы 1992 soldier
 Maqsatov Eli Izturganuly  Мақсатов Әли Ізтұрғанұлы 1992 soldier
 Mukashev Nurlanbek Quatbekuly  Мұқашев Нұрланбек Қуатбекұлы 1991 soldier
 Rey Denis Viktorovich  Рей Денис Викторович 1993 soldier
 Sagyngaliyev jenis Deuletuly  Сағынғалиев Жеңіс Дәулетұлы 1990 soldier
 Usipaliyev Nurjas Duysembauly  Үсіпәлиев Нұржас Дүйсембайұлы 1991 soldier
 Kim Ruslan Nikolayevich  Ким Руслан Николаевич 1964 huntsman


Vladislav Chelakh's life sentence upheld again

June 1, 2013

ASTANA – A Kazakhstani military court June 21 upheld the life sentence of convicted mass murder Vladislav Chelakh, Novosti-Kazakhstan reported.

Chelakh, a former border guard, was convicted in December of killing 14 colleagues and a forest ranger at the Gornyi border outpost in May 2012.

An appellate court also upheld Chelakh's sentence in February. Defence attorney Serik Sarsenov said earlier that Chelakh would seek clemency from President Nursultan Nazarbayev after exhausting all his appeals, Novosti-Kazakhstan added.


Arkankergen - year after border massacre

May 28, 2013

A year ago, on the night of May 27-28, independent Kazakhstan saw one of the bloodiest tragedies in its history - the Massacre at Arkankergen Border Post, reports KTK Channel.

These days, Usharal, a settlement near the burnt garrison, where the military district management is quartered, is preparing for commemorative ceremonials, which the relatives of those slaughtered at the border post will be visiting.

A new squad is bearing commission at the notorious post today. It now consists of contract servicemen only.

They chose not to restore the old burnt barracks but to build a brand new post nearby.

Today, young border guards on service in Usharal live a usual soldierly life - marching on the drill ground, doing physical training and sitting theoretical lessons.

To talk about the bloodshed is not welcome in these places, while, the whole country well remembers it.

"When they told me I was assigned to Usharal, my parents were frightened at first. You know the case with Vladislav Chelakh. I felt no fear when heard where I was going, on the contrary, I was happy to serve in border troops," says Private Sergei Panasyuk.

However, Private Panasyuk, like other conscripts, will not be serving at the post. Since recently, the border is watched by professional contract soldiers only. It's believed to be safer.

"They have 3 or 5 year contracts. They are experienced and know all nuances of serving, particularly, in mountaneous places. Therefore, only servicemen under contract are sent to outposts," explains Maksim Gordienko, commander of staff of the military unit 2484 of Border Guard Service.

A group of border guards arrived here just a week ago. The outpost is contacted every two hours. Besides fixed communication means, a satellite one has been installed.

The construction of the new post will begin in a month. The new facilities will be built in 500 meters from the old burnt one.

Soldiers try to avoid going to the burnt site - everything there reminds the tragedy.

That is exactly where, a year ago, in the early morning of May 28, a bloodshed took place.

Fourteen soldiers and a forest ranger were mercilessly shot to death while asleep and burnt with the barracks.

A marble slab with 14 names has been put here. The same memorial will be opened in Usharal.

Rabiga Kadyrgaliyeva and her husband are preparing for the trip. She still can't believe her son Nurzhas is no longer alive.

"Mother's heart does not believe that my son is dead. I am going there to pay tribute to those guys who my son served with. My son is alive and I am still waiting for him to come," she says.

Relatives of the murdered border guards will be flown to Usharal from Almaty by a military plane.

The mother of Vladislav Chelakh, a then 19-year-old soldier accused of killing his fellow soldiers and later sentenced to life, Svetlana Vaschenko is coming too.


Kazakh border guard sentenced to life for murdering 15

December 11, 2012

TALDY-KURGAN (Kazakhstan), December 11 – RAPSI. The Inter-District Military Court for Criminal Cases has found 19-year-old Kazakh border guard Vladislav Chelakh guilty of murdering 15 people at the Arkankergen border post in Kazakhstan and sentenced him to life imprisonment at a maximum security penal colony.

The court has also partially upheld the lawsuits filed by the victims to recover over $218,000 in material and moral damages from the convict.

Chelakh has been accused of murder, theft, illegally obtaining and distributing of state secrets; embezzlement or extortion of weapons, ammo, explosive devices; illegal acquisition, transfer, sale, storage, transfer or carrying of weapons and explosive devices; intentional destruction or damaging of military equipment; desertion, violation of the housing's inviolability.

The massacre at the Arkankergen border post took place in May. The post went off the air, and a border guard unit was soon sent to the location from another post. The latter found that the barrack had been burned down and 14 dead people were inside. The body of a hunter was found at a house nearby.

Private Chelakh, the sole survivor, was detained several days later.

The border guard initially confessed to murdering his colleagues and the huntsman, but later denied his testimony, claiming that he had testified under pressure.

Chelakh was inconsolable in the courtroom when the verdict was handed down. His mother Svetlana Vashchenko has vowed to appeal his sentence.


Kazakhstan Massacre Survivor Takes the Blame

June 7, 2012

The only survivor of a May 30 border post massacre in southwestern Kazakhstan has confessed to killing all 15 victims - 14 border guards and one civilian, said.

However, locals suspect the 19-year-old draftee, Private Vladislav Chelakh, was forced to take the blame by special services to cover up the real culprits. A news presenter at a local channel has quit, saying he refused to read “false” news about the confessions.

Chelakh was arrested in possession of his commander's weapon on June 5, several days after the bodies of fourteen border guards and a local huntsman were found in burnt-out border post barracks, which was initially thought to have been destroyed by an armed attack or an argument between the soldiers.

Chelakh said he had shot all the soldiers and the local hunter, put their bodies into beds and then set fire to the barracks. Then he said he went up into the mountains, taking civilian clothes and a small sum of money with him.

On June 4, Chelakh returned to the burned out border post where he saw investigators. He was reportedly in a deep stupor and could not say a word.

Investigators are considering several versions, including a fight between the soldiers (although none of them had a trace of alcohol in their blood), an attack by religious extremists, an assault by smugglers, and even extraterrestial forces. The main version, however, is bullying.

Chelakh was the only ethnic Russian on the border post. So investigators said he could have been subjected to hazing.

The young man’s family said he had been looking forward to service as a border guard. But the local Vremya newspaper said something had happened to Chelakh on the second day of his service at the border post in question. The soldier has refused to comment, even though he might be facing a life term if found guilty.

The soldier’s mother, Svetlana Vashchenko, said she would go to the International Criminal Court to probe the massacre since she believed her son was not guilty.

“The lawyers refuse to defend my son and those who agree charge $2,000 a month, I’ve got relatives in Belgium…they will help to collect documents to appeal to the International Court,” Vashchenko said.

The mother strongly denies that her son could be capable of killing people.

Meanwhile, the head of the notorious border post, Alexey Fomin, was arrested on Thursday for having failed to report on the suspicious silence at the post from May 28-30, a spokesman for the Kazakh Prosecutor General’s office, Nurdaulet Suindikov, said.

Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev described the incident as a terrorist attack, and said he had set up a special commission to investigate it.



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